First Full Moon Festival recognized as national intangible cultural heritage

First Full Moon Festival recognized as national intangible cultural heritage

The Saigon Times Daily

A highlight of the First Full Moon Festival is parades with various fantastic activities – PHOTO: VNA

HCMC – The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has recognized Tet Nguyen Tieu (First Full Moon Festival) celebrated by Vietnamese of Chinese descent in District 5 of HCMC as national intangible cultural heritage, the Vietnam News Agency reports.

Tet Nguyen Tieu falls on the 15th day of the first lunar month and has been organized annually in the Cho Lon (Big Market) area since 1990, attracting large numbers of local revelers and foreign tourists.

Originating in China, Tet Nguyen Tieu has been adapted to Vietnam’s culture and plays an important role in the country’s cultural and religious life, especially among the people of Chinese descent. The first full moon is regarded by the community as the most important among all full moon days throughout the lunar year.

People usually hang flower garlands and lanterns to pray for good weather, bumper crops and thriving business. On this occasion, red lanterns are seen on the facades of shopping centers, restaurants, hotels and private homes along major streets in in District 5 such as Nguyen Trai, Luong Nhu Hoc and Tran Hung Dao. That’s why the festival is also called the Lantern Festival.

A highlight of the festival is parades and street performances from the 12th until the 18th day of the first lunar month.

Many other exciting activities are held during the festival, such as traditional music performances, lion dances, dragon dances, and displays of calligraphy works. People also go to pagodas and temples to pray for peace, good fortune, health and happiness.

This year, due to the spread of coronavirus, District 5 authorities canceled the festival.