A garden party was held on May 27 to celebrate the Dragon Boat Festival at Minhang campus. The Dragon Boat Festival, an important festival recognized by all areas of China, will be officially celebrated on May 30 this year.
ECNU's School of Social Development and Changning District Cultural Bureau were the primary organizers of the event, who hoped that through this event more students would gain a better understanding of the traditional Chinese festival and its impact on Chinese history and society.
The party appealed to nearly 1,000 visitors with displays of traditional entertainments and food to symbolize the culture of the Dragon Boat Festival, including the dragon dance, realgar wine, Ay Tsao sachet and colorful rice dumplings. Visitors were also treated by a few performances that released the Chinese Dragon Boat Festival atmosphere, for example the legendary folk tale called “Madame White Snake”, a folk percussion arrangement called “Tiger is Grinding the Teeth” and a traditional Chinese archery show signified some of the most common themes to celebrate the festival.
The celebration, of course, did not neglect to present the historical play“Qu Yuan”, a story about the supposed origin of the Dragon Boat Festival. The main character, Qu Yuan, is known for his loyal patriotism and acts of courage and brevity.
“It was the first time for me to watch the play at campus, ”a music major said. “It is very interesting and makes me realize that our traditional festivals have such rich folklores. I wish I had partaken in more cultural activities like this. ”
The second Saturday of every June was marked as the Cultural Heritage Day by the State Council in 2006, though the name of the festival was officially changed to Cultural and Natural Heritage Day in September 2016.
The garden party was held as China’s first Cultural and Natural Heritage Day event, which aims to create an atmosphere that welcomes and supports cultural heritage; simultaneously emphasizing the importance of protecting the rich aspects of cultural heritage and folklore.
ECNU’s traditional Dragon Boat Festival garden party can be traced back to 2009. This year’s event recruited more than 100 student volunteers through WeChat to take part in folk performances at the party.