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Dragon Boat Festival
Time: 5th day of the 5th lunar month
Venue: All over Chin
Origin: During the Warring States Period (475-221 BC), Qu Yuan, a patriotic poet of the state of Chu, was removed from office and sent into exile by the duke of Chu. In sorrow, Qu took a stone in his embrace and drowned himself in the Miluo River on the 5th day of the 5th lunar month. The local people wrapped glutinous rice in mugwort leaves and threw it into the river to lure the shrimps, fish and crabs away from the remains of the deceased poet. With the passing of time the practice of throwing rice into the river as a sacrifice to Qu Yuan gradually evolved into a custom.
What¡¯s On: To show their respect for the great patriotic poet, the Chinese make it a point to mark the anniversary of his death by eat ing zongzi, a pyramid-shaped dumpling made of glutinous rice wrapped in bamboo or reed leaves, and holding dragon boat races. Tourist activities are organized in various parts of the country, but the celebrations in the city of Miluo are most fascinating. The International Dragon Boat Festival held in June 10-14 annually in Yueyang, Hunan Province, is perhaps the most famous known in China. More than 20 dragon boat teams from the United States, Canada, Australia, and countries and regions in Southeast Asia attend the racing and demonstration shows every year.