In China, one of the most important holidays is the the Dragon Boat Festival, also called the Duanwu Festival, or 端午节(Duān wǔ jié). For those unfamiliar with this holiday, it is celebrated on the fifth day of the fifth month according to the Chinese calendar. This year, the holiday will fall on June 23rd, which means a weekend off for all Chinese people! For thousands of years, the festival has been marked by eating 粽子(zòng zi) (glutinous rice wrapped to form a pyramid using bamboo or reed leaves) and racing dragon boats. Try some “粽子”(zòng zi), they’re delicious!
端午节 (Duānwǔ jié), Dragon Boat Festival is an traditional holiday that falls on the fifth day of the fifth month each year of the lunar calendar. Dragon Boat Festival is believed to have originated in China, but is celebrated throughout many East Asian and Southeast Asian countries. For centuries Chinese citizens have celebrated the Dragon Boast Festival by consuming 粽子 (zòngzi), a type of steamed rice dumpling made with gluttonous rice, filled with various fillings, and wrapped in bamboo leaves; and racing 龙舟 (lóngzhōu), dragon boats.
The Dragon Boat Festival and its traditional customs commemorate the death of 屈原(Qūyuán), a minister of the ancient state of Chu and a poet during the Warring States Period in the Zhou Dynasty. Quyuan, who was regarded as a loyal and wise minister, was banished for opposing an alliance between the king and the state of Qin. 28 years after his exile, the state of Qin conquered the capital of Chu. Out of misery and perhaps as an act of protest, Quyuan committed suicide by grabbing a large stone and jumping into the Miluo River on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month. Following his death, the people of Chu mourned his death by throwing triangles of gluttonous rice wrapped in bamboo leaves (zongzi) into the river to feed Quyuan’s spirit. The people of Chu also paddled their boats on the river in hopes of finding Quyuan’s body