Thap Cuu Tien Cong Temple festival - Halong Junk Cruises

Thap Cuu Tien Cong Temple festival

Thap Cuu Tien Cong Temple festival

Place: At Thap Cuu Tien Cong Temple (Temple of the 19 Founding Fathers) in Cam La Commune on Ha Nam Island, Yen Hung District.
Time: Every year, the village starts the festivities on the seventh day of the first lunar month.
Significance: In commemorating the 19 founding fathers who built dykes, and created the island of today.
Legend has it; the festival opening day was the day founding fathers discovered underground fresh water on the island, more than 500 years ago.

On the seventh day, the senior men of the village (all older than 70 years old), along with their children and grandchildren, arrive at the temple. Young people carry offerings (betel and areca, wine, steamed glutinous rice, chicken or the head of a pig) on their heads to the decorative cult tables. The elderly men follow them, if need be, aided by their offspring. Every family makes its own procession. All processions join together near the temple make a jubilant and animated atmosphere but still sacred. The old men present offerings and worship Tien Cong, the ceremony usually ends at noon. The North Vietnam tours

After that is the ground-breaking ritual: four elderly men will be chosen and they have to pick four balls of earth and build a mock dyke in front of the incense table of the founding fathers. They then perform acts of wrestling to represent the “struggle against nature”. This is to continue the cause of those who built dykes on the sea to protect the villages and hamlets of the island.
After the ground-breaking ceremony, local villagers and their neigbors start boisterous party with traditional entertainment such as bullfighting, cockfighting, chess people, singing and traditional music performance.

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