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Tuen Ng (Dragon Boat) Festival

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Tuen Ng (Dragon Boat) FestivalThe Dragon Boat Festival has been celebrated on the fifth day of the fifth moon in the month of June for the past 21/2 millennia.

This Festival, also known as Tuen Ng Festival, solemnizes the death of a popular Chinese national hero, Qu Yuan, who drowned himself in the Mi Lo River over 2,000 years ago to protest against the corrupt rulers of 3rd century. People of the town saw him drowning, they attempted to rescue him by beating drums to scare fish, so that fish may not eat the body of Qu Yuan. The people also threw rice dumplings into the river to attract the fishes.

The Celebrations
Over the period the event had taken the form of most exciting festival in Hong Kong, local and international participants actively participates in fast and frenzied dragon boat races on the banging of drums.

The intricately designed, colorfully painted dragon boats are the prominence of the festivities of blending heritage, sports and exhibitions.
The Dragon Boats are the magnificent boats, measuring more than 10m with exquisitely carved and painted dragons with their heads and tails. Each boat is capable of carrying a crew of 20-22 paddlers. The boat is like a colossal war kayak accompanied by a drummer at mid-canoe who sets the timing of oar strokes with a huge drum.

Hong Kong is famous for its marvelous Dragon Boat Festival. There are more then half a dozen sites in the city where this daylong race celebration takes place. ‘Tai Po’ and ‘Yaumatei’ usually host the biggest dragon boat events. ‘Stanley Village’ is another popular site famous for the Dragon Festival.

The main competitions take place on Shing Mun River, at Sha Tin in the New Territories. A gunshot strike, mark the starting of a race and immediately an indiscrete rhythm of drum deck the dragon boats and the sound of chime aboard fills the harbor with noise.

Today, people remember this fabulous event by eating rice-and-meat dumplings wrapped in bamboo leaves; and many looks forward to swimming or even simply dipping their hands in the water.

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