What are we celebrating? This ancient festival commemorates the death of Chinese poet, Qu Yuan, who drowned himself in the Milou River during his exile by the Chu Emperor. Qu Yuan was a loyal and honest servant of the Chu state. He tried hard to fight against the corrupted rulers by urging the emperor not to ally with the Qin state as he knew Qin would eventually want to conquer Chu. Yet, the Emperor and other corrupted ministers fell under the influence of Qin’s gifts and tributes, therefore had Qu banished instead.
What to expect? Qu Yuan was respected and loved by the people at that time, so the fisherman threw dumplings and rushed out on longboats to keep fish away from eating Qu Yuan’s body. Nowadays, we eat dumplings and race dragon boats to remember the story. Munch on dumplings wrapped with glutinous rice, beans, meat and salted egg in bamboo leaves! The dragon boat races take place in many areas around Hong Kong. Find out your nearest race location and get ready to cheer! Note, the crowds will be large on the beaches, so get there early or hitch a ride on a boat to view from the water.