Elephant race where winner gets a jumbo feast

Every year, an elephant race (locally called Annayottam) is held at the Guruvayur Sri Krishna temple in Kerala marking the begining of the annual festival. This is a unique race where over 30 elephants run over a kilometre to win the right to be the main elephant to carry Krishna's idol during the festival. The winner gets a special treat during the festival. Legend has it that at one point of time, the temple did not have an elephant during the festival and Manjula, a devotee, called out standing at the edge of a forest and elephants came running. Long ago, the forests vanished in Guruvayur giving way to highrise buildings and a railway station. But the tradition continues.