Hoi An Festivals: Every year on the 12th day of the first lunar month, which falls on February 21st in 2024, the residents of Kim Bong carpentry village in Cam Kim commune, Hoi An City, come together to honor the memory of their craft village’s ancestors.
This solemn occasion serves as a testament to their gratitude towards their forebears and a heartfelt prayer for abundance and prosperity in the year ahead.
The Rich Heritage of Kim Bong Carpentry Village
Established in the 15th century by settlers from the Northern Delta and Thanh Nghe Tinh region, Kim Bong carpentry village emerged during the exploration of the fertile lands of Kim Bong. The profession witnessed significant growth in the late 16th and early 17th centuries, buoyed by the prosperity of Hoi An trading port. By the 18th century, it flourished, comprising three distinct occupational groups: carpentry for urban architectural projects, civil carpentry, and shipbuilding and repair.
Renowned for its skilled artisans, Kim Bong carpentry village played a pivotal role in crafting the wooden structures that adorned ancient Hoi An. Many of these craftsmen were summoned by the Nguyen lords of Dang Trong, later the Nguyen court, to contribute their expertise to projects in the Hue citadel.
Despite the challenges posed by time and conflict, Kim Bong carpentry village persisted, albeit facing the looming threat of extinction. However, with the burgeoning tourism industry in Hoi An and the concerted efforts of local authorities, the craft experienced a revival. In June 2016, Kim Bong carpentry was officially recognized as a National Intangible Cultural Heritage by the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.
Beyond carpentry, Kim Bong village boasts a diverse array of traditional professions such as bricklaying, basket weaving, and mat weaving, further enriching the tapestry of its cultural heritage.
Commemorating Ancestors and Welcoming Prosperity: Hoi An’s Lunar New Year Festival at Kim Bong Carpentry Village
Among the myriad Hoi An festivals, this particular event stands out for its dual purpose: honoring the invaluable contributions of ancestors who established and nurtured the craft village, while also serving as a captivating cultural spectacle that draws tourists to the village.
Every year, the Kim Bong Carpentry Ancestor’s Death Anniversary pays homage to the significant contributions of the four revered generals, revered as the founding figures of the carpentry profession in Kim Bong village. Additionally, it serves as a platform for local carpentry workshops to exchange expertise and showcase their craftsmanship, delighting both residents and tourists alike.
The solemn ceremony marking the death anniversary of Kim Bong carpentry village in Hoi An traditionally commences in the early morning hours, typically around 7:00 a.m.
The proceedings are overseen by esteemed elders renowned for their carpentry skills, commanding presence, and widespread respect within the village. Commencing with ritual sacrifices and offerings, the ceremony aims to invoke blessings for the village’s residents at the onset of the new year, fostering strength, creativity, and tranquility among the village’s artisans.
In the year 2024, alongside the solemn ceremony, festivities will abound with a variety of entertaining folk activities and games. From the exhilarating clay pot smashing to the soulful melodies of hut songs, from indulging in delectable treats at the food fair to partaking in traditional folk games and discovering OCOP (One Commune One Product) products, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
These attractions are sure to captivate both residents and visitors, offering them a memorable and immersive experience of the vibrant cultural tapestry of Hoi An.
>> People read also the signification of Vietnamese Lunar New Year’s Eve.
Other Hoi An Festivals on the Occasion of Lunar New Year 2024
According to the Hoi An City People’s Committee, a plethora of special events are slated to unfold before, during, and after the Lunar New Year, known as Tet, in the year of Dragon (Giap Thin), aimed at both locals and visitors alike.
From February 2nd to 9th, the city will burst into color with the Spring Flower Festival adorning its inner roads. Meanwhile, the Thanh Hoa library will host the Spring Press Conference from February 1st to 7th, followed by a second session from February 15th to 27th.
As the Lunar New Year’s Eve approaches, the old town area will come alive with an Anison music performance, the bestowal of spring blessing charms, and an enchanting New Year art program.
Traditional Hoi An festivities such as the New Year tree planting ceremonies, the Spring Festival at Tra Que Village, the commemoration of Kim Bong, the founder of carpentry, the Full Moon festival, and the Cam Nam sticky corn festival will continue as cherished customs.
Throughout the Tet holiday, the ancient town will be abuzz with various activities, including creative corners and installation art spaces, street music performances, folk games, and opera showcases, offering a vibrant tapestry of cultural experiences for all to enjoy.