Location:- Houston, Texas, United States of America
Main Deity:- The presiding deity at this temple is Maa Durga, and incarnation of Shakti or the Hindu goddess of Power. Besides the Goddess, there are shrines for maa Kali, Radha Krishna and a Shiva ling in the main sanctum.
Maa Durga is seen here in her Mahishashur Mardini form, complete with her family of Ganesh, karthik, Lakshmi and Saraswati. In Bengali, Durgabari means home of Devi Durga (bari-home).
Architecture:- The temple is not a huge structure. It does however has large, well maintained grounds. The entire temple is a brick structure and is built while keeping in mind Hindu asthetics.
The main entrance showcases a beautiful Rangoli (designs) on the floor. This type of rangoli is traditional to Bengali households and is also called "Alpona".
The main sanctum is an Octagonal structure, with the largest space dedicated to the shrine of Devi Durga and her children. To the right and left of this main shrine are shrines for Maa Kali and Radha-Krishna respectively.
Main sanctum while Puja is in progress
Too the far end of the sanctum, is a space dedicated solely to Lord Shiva. A Shivaling is installed which also has an idol of Nandi.
Shivaling and Nandi
The main sanctum has two other rooms at each end. These rooms have been installed for the convenience of the priests and for storing equipment and other Puja related stuff.
The main hall is pretty big and can accomodate a large number of devotees. There are chairs placed for disabled and elderly devotees.
The precint also consists of a Kala Bhavan - where artists are showcased and exhibitions are held and an Auditorium.
Festivals:- Since, this temple is the heart of the Bengali community based in Texas, USA, Durga Puja is the biggest festival that is celebrated here. It is a celebration of Devi Paksha, in the holy Hindu month of Ashwin (Oct-Nov). This festival is for about 4 days and concludes with a ritual immersion (visarjan) at the nearby waterfront.
Besides Durga Puja, the other festivals celebrated here are Shiv ratri, Kojagiri Purnima, Kali Puja, Deepavali etc. Services:- Community involvement and development is the main mission of Houston Durga Bari society. Regular Pujas and festivals are held to increase awareness about Hindu customs and traditions. Educational and cultural programs are held for youngsters. These programs also include Bengali language classes, music, Indian percussion instruments and dance.
Every year, during the various festivals, the Durga bari hosts prominent Indian artists for their concerts. The halls of the temple are available for rent too.
They also have library services that provide various fiction, non fiction and religious books and audio visual aids to families at a nominal fee.
Priest:- Dr. Bishnupada Goswami is the head preist and spiritual advisor of the Houston Durgabari.
How To Reach:- Houston is one of the major cities in Texas and is well connected to cities like Dallas, Fort worth, Austin, San Antonio etc.
By Air:- The nearest airport is Houston (George Bush Intercontinental) airport
By Road:- This temple is close to the suburban areas in Houston and the city of Sugarland, Texas
By Rail:- Amtrak railway to Houston, followed by public transport buses or rental cars.
Nearby Places to Visit:-
NASA space station
Galveston Island and beaches