How the date is decided annually
Ramayana Week starts on the day of Hindi/Telugu New Year and continues until one day before Rama Naumee (generally lasts 8 days/nights)
Significance of the festival to Hinduism
Devotees engage in Ramayana recital, singing of bhajans and kirtans and listening to discourses/stories on the Ramcharitmanas of Goswami Tulsidas. The purpose of these Ramayana recitals and devotional singing is to prepare the devotee physically and spiritually for the appearance of Lord Rama on Rama Naumee day.
How to observe/practice
Each evening from the New Year day to a day before Rama Naumee, devotees perform deity worship, sing bhajans and kirtans in Temples. The Temple Pundit or an expert on Ramayana will lead the singing of verses from the Ramcharitmanas (generally with music accompaniment) and present an explanation on the sections read.