Miao People’s Folk Valentine’s Day Opened in SW China

The Sisters Festival, or Valentine’s Day for the Miao ethnic minority in Taijiang County, southwest China’s Guizhou province, kicked off to the sound of Lusheng, a reed-pipe wind instrument, and drumbeats on April 5, 2012.

Miao Sisters Rice Festival - Folk Valentine's Day

Girls dressed up at Miao Ethnic Sisters Festival

The three-day fest used to be a dating occasion for young Miao people to find their Mr. or Mrs. Right, but now it is celebrated by more than just hopeful singles.

Wu Li, 34, is a mother of two kids, but she is also very excited about the festival in Taijiang county and got up at 5 a.m. to put on make-up and get ready for the parade.

“Our ethnic costumes and the silver accessories on the head weigh over 5 kgs, but they look so beautiful and I have fun dancing in them,” Wu said.

Besides the parade, the Sisters Meal is a must during the festival. Young women make flower-shaped rice dumplings with keepsakes wrapped inside and serve them to the men they like, as the dumplings are shaped like flowers, so the festival is also known as the “Festival hidden in Flowers.”

Miao Sisters Rice Festival - Folk Valentine's Day

Colorful Sister Meal – a must for the festival

Taijiang county is home to 159,000 people, of which the Miao account for 98 percent. For Miao people, the Sisters Festival is one of the most active festivals, and held annually from the 15th to 17th day of the third lunar month. In the festival, young lads and girls sing gentle love songs with soft emotion. It offers a good chance for them to meet and begin their courtship. Girls, who are the center of the festival, would invite their sweet hearts to eat Sister Rice. Also, there are other traditional activities, including canoeing contest, dragon dance, horse racing, and bullfighting.

Miao Sisters Rice Festival - Folk Valentine's Day

Miao girls would serve Sister Meal to the men she likes.

(Source from Xinhua)

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