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Sharing Hakka Culture, Collecting Joyful Memories
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04 08

The 2019 Hakka Tung Blossom Festival invites all to appreciate Tung flowers, try local food, and enjoy people's hospitality

Flowers, Food & Hospitality: Organized by 14 local governments, 2019 Hakka Tung Blossom Festival invites all to visit Hakka villages and be pampered by people's generosity In the spring, the young green sprouts popping up from Tung trees in the mountains always mark the arrival of the Hakka Tung Blossom Festival. This year, the festival will kick off in early April and go on until May 19. Taking the theme of “Grateful to the Sky – Let’s Protect Our Most Attractive Mountain Towns Together,” the festival is jointly organized by 14 Hakka local governments. The side events will be aimed at “appreciating Tung flowers, serving honest food, and treating visitor with hospitality.” An opening ceremony will be held on Saturday April 13 in New Era Art Resort & Spa of Puli, Nantou. A Hakka Affairs Council officer noted that Tung trees were seen as economic crops in the past, although by now their economic value has gone. Nevertheless, the Tung forests, still alive and thriving today, bear witness to Hakka villages’ industry evolvement. In fact, the HAC always expresses gratitude to the Sky and the Earth, as well as the early settlers who built the Hakka towns and villages. The Council encourages all Hakka people to remember their roots while bringing in something new. [Hakka Hospitality] Arts and cultural performances and hundreds of Tung-flower shops with special offers An opening ceremony held for the 2019 Hakka Tung Blossom Festival will be held on April 13 at New Era Art Resort & Spa in Puli, Nantou. Winning singers of the Golden Melody Awards such as Lin Sheng Xiang, Liu Shaoxi, and Huang Peishu, as well as Hui Fong Dance Studio and B-Max, will all dedicate a few songs. In reception of visitors, at Puli Terminal of Nantou, shuttle buses will be available for all to use. Also, memorial mugs will be distributed upon presentation of gift coupons on site. On the following two weekends, in Miaoli and Hsinchu, large music concerts will be held, featuring international musician Matthew Lien, pianist Rueibin Chen, Hakka performing artist Yang Shih-hao who stood out at Asia's Got Talents, and Hakka winners of Golden Melody Awards such as Ayugo Huang, Chen Yung-tao, and Yen Chi-wen. Festival goers can expect to enjoy a refreshing show full of all kinds of arts and cultural elements! Visitors are advised to take a walk at flowering sites in the morning and visit Hakka villages in the afternoon to learn about Hakka culture. This year, a hundred shops in the 14 participating counties and cities will provide special offers. Visitors can find these shops according to the festival marks posted on the windows of the shops. In the blooming month of April, all are cordially invited to visit the Hakka villages for a journey that enriches one’s body and soul. [Tung Flowers] Raknus Selu Trail joins the festival for the first time For the first time, Raknus Selu Trail on Provincial Highway 3 is chosen for the Hakka Tung Blossom Festival. The manually refurbished Dunan Old Train in Guanxi of Hsinchu and 14 trails scheduled for maintenance such as Daniuqi Old Trail of Taoyuan, Shuguang Old Trail of Hsinchu, and Tonggui Hiking Trail of Miaoli are also included in the festival organizer’s recommended itineraries. Comprehensive tourist info can be found at the festival website in Chinese, English, Japanese and Korean. A flower-appreciation booklet in Chinese, English and Japanese is available for downloads. To provide visitors with first-hand flower info, 182 volunteers will update the flower status at the festival website’s “Flower Updates” section. Working with the Central Weather Bureau, the day’s weather, temperature, and precipitation will also be shown. This shall enable all visitors to grasp the best timing for appreciating Tung blossoms. The festival now has an Instagram account, sharing beautiful flower images. An activity entitled “Let’s Share Flower Info” is also going on, and visitors are encouraged to send Tung flower images with hashtags of the activity title and the cities or towns where the photos are taken (such as # Let’s Share Flower Info # Miaoli). The photos might then be chosen for the much visited Hakka Tung Blossom Festival website, and event get posted on the festival’s Facebook page and IG. All visitors are encouraged to use #Hakka Tung Blossom Festival, #Tung blossom festival, and @ hakkatung. Let your beautiful flower photos be seen by more and make them jealous of your unique and wonderful journey! [Honest Food] Slow food, farmers’ markets, community food, and Tung flower lunchboxes This year, for the Hakka Tung Blossom Festival, Hakka Affairs Council invites all to visit Hakka villages and explore local farms. Hakka slow-food markets and farmers’ markets will be held in Puli of Nantou, Shitan of Miaoli, and Guanxi of Hsinchu. HAC encourages all to lead a healthy life by eating seasonal local food. Would you care for some real Hakka food made by Hakka moms? During the flower festival, Guanxi Academy in Hsinchu will serve Hakka village cuisine. Group reservations are accepted. Gourmands can find both tradition and creativity in the food, such as salty Hakka rice balls and Chinese mesona jelly. Visitors from all parts of the country can expect to enjoy delicious meals made with fresh seasonal ingredients. From farm to table, let’s enjoy the culinary charm of the countryside together! The Hakka Affairs Council has especially invited renowned Hakka chef Chiu Pao-lang to design two Tung-flower lunchboxes (one is vegetarian), using locally produced farm produce such as the green bamboo shoots of Shitan in Miaoli, the jujubes of Gongguan in Miaoli, and the Chinese mushrooms and water bamboo shoots of Puli in Nantou. The lunchboxes are made by local contractors and each box is NT$120, sold on a limited offer at Taiwan Hakka Museum. This is a rare chance to try authentic Hakka food so don’t miss it! For more info about the 2019 festival, special offers, and flower status, please visit Hakka Tung Blossom Festival or Romantic Hakka.

03 18

Vice president and HAC minister attend opening ceremony of Liudui Sports Game

Sports players of the 12 townships and districts of Liudui across Kaohsiung and Pingtung gathered up at Pingtung County Neipu Junior High School in the morning today (16th). Having been trained for a long while, the players are to compete against one another at the two-day 2019 54th Liudui Sports Game. Hakka Affairs Council Minister Lee Yung-de, who is from Liudui, expressed his sincerest wishes for the event, hoping to see that it becomes better and better each year and held continuously throughout generations, as this will help to pass down Hakka culture. Vice president Chen Chien-jen also attended the occasion on behalf of president Tsai Ying-wen. Serving a ball together, He and Lee announced the start of the game. At the opening ceremony held in Neipu Junior High School, high-ranking HAC officials and staffers first entered the site. They were followed by sports players who showed off the farm produce and specialties of their towns in parade teams. This year’s organizer, Neipu Township Office, has especially arranged a 23-member Harley-Davidson motorcycle team led by magistrate Chung Ching-chen. As a relay torch was lit and a Liudui flag was set, the attendants were all thrilled. Other than the sports game and a farmers’ market, “Night of Liudui Hakka Music” will be held. Famous local Hakka bands, such as San Geou Tai Youngsters’ Band and Sheng-Xiang & Band, will dedicate a few songs. In this warm season when flowers bloom, the organizer cordially invites all to join Liudui Sports Game. Other than all kinds of exciting games, visitors are free to try Liudui food and appreciate Hakka countryside. Liudui Sports Game is definitely worth a visit.

02 25

Celebrating its 55th anniversary, Hakka Folk Song Festival plays resounding music

The four-day Hakka Folk Song Festival will start today (24th) in Zhudong, Hsinchu. Township magistrate Luo Chi-hsiang cordially invites fans of Hakka singing to visit Zhudong and listen to resounding Hakka songs. First held by former magistrate Ku Sui-chang in 1965, the festival is in its 55th year now. In fact, this annual event has been held non-stop like a relay race. The festival will start with a street parade joined by 18 teams consisting of neighborhood and community members. From Zhudong Train Station to Hakka Opera Park, the parading teams will manifest the hospitality of Hakka people. Following suit, “National treasure” Hsu Hsueh-chuan, a master artist of folk singing, will sing the festival’s theme song. Winner of the Best Hakka Album of the Golden Melody Awards Wang Feng-chu will also to her hometown to sing with her twin grandchildren for the public. Township magistrate Luo Chi-hsiang noted at a press conference that the Hakka Folk Song Festival features a four-day traditional folk singing competition, in addition to folk singing cultural display, a 55th anniversary exhibition, two Hakka opera shows by Songxing Hakka Troupe, and a joyous open market. At the DIY classes, visitors can make limited-edition Hakka lion packing tapes, bamboo cicada toys, Hakka silk prints, and Zhudong-edition leather reels. Visitors may also want to join Hakka dialect adventure games and children’s drawing contests. What’s more, students of Dongtai Senior High School will present sweet Hakka rice cakes and fruit sculptures. At the closing and award ceremony held on February 27, JF Taiko Drumming Group, Golden Melody Awards winner Urban Cat, and young Hakka singer Huang Wei Jie will all dedicate a few performances. A prize draw will be held to distribute gifts.

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