Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — The annual Hùng Kings Memorial Festival (Hùng Temple Festival) hosted by the northern province of Phú Thọ is approaching. Organisers have put together an exciting list of events, including contributions from neighbouring provinces.
The event will consist of various ceremonies and entertaining activities between April 21 and 25 (the 6th to 10th day of the third month of the Lunar New Year). It will be a gathering space for tourists, local traders and entertainers from Phú Thọ Province as well as from the four provinces of Bình Dương, Kiên Giang Thái Nguyên and Quảng Nam.
Last year’s festival had a turnout of over three million people, so local authorities are making an extra effort to ensure the smooth execution of this year’s celebrations.
The festival will include a ceremony dedicated to the Hùng Kings, a memorial to mark the death of National Father Lạc Long Quân, and an incense offering ceremony to the National Mother Âu Cơ. There will also be a palanquin carrying ceremony at the Hùng Temple Complex, a memorial for the ancestors of the Hùng Kings, xoan (spring) singing in Phú Thọ and a folk street carnival.
Communities in Phú Thọ Province will perform artful items, for example: locals from Thanh Thủy District will act in the Đào Xá elephant procession ceremony, people from Lâm Thao District will perform activities in the Trò Trám Festival, and entertainers from Đoan Hùng District will perform walking on stilts.
Various vocal folk activities from districts such as Thanh Sơn, Yên Lập, Hạ Hòa, Cẩm Khê and Tân Sơn will take place at the event.
Dozens of exhibitions will take place to advertise local culture, there will aslo be cake making contests, and sport tournaments and folk games will be organized throughout the province.
A night market and a food street will be organised in a pedestrianised zone to entertain tourists throughout the celebration.
Melodious Xoan singing will be performed at the Lãi Lèn Temple, and the Thét and Kim Đái communal houses in the Kim Đức and Hùng Lô communes of Việt Trì City.
Local authorities will uphold a five pillar policy throughout the festival. This includes limiting traffic jams, curbing over-charging of tourists, ensuring there is no unsafe food, no violence, and a zero tolerance stance on begging.
The organizing board has set up hot lines for tourists to use leading up to the occasion: the numbers are 02103860026 and 02106551666.
Vietnamese legend has it that Lạc Long Quân, the son of Kinh Dương Vương, married Âu Cơ, the daughter of King Đế Lai. Âu Cơ then gave birth to a sack containing 100 eggs from which 100 children were born.
The couple then decided to separate in order to populate the land. Half of the children followed their mother to the highlands, while the rest went with their father to the sea.
The first child went with his mother Âu Cơ to Phong Châu, now Phú Thọ Province. He then became King Hùng and founded Văn Lang - the first recorded nation in the history of Việt Nam.
Ruling the country for 18 generations, the Hùng Kings taught the people how to grow wet rice. They chose Nghĩa Lĩnh Mountain, the highest in the region, to perform rituals devoted to rice and sun deities to pray for lush crops.—VNS