Saigon's Chinatown celebrates first full moon of the year in style

Thanh Nien News

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Nearly 1,200 people sing and dance around Chinatown in colorful costumes


 Men don ancient costumes during a carnival held by the Chinese community in Ho Chi Minh City on February 22 to celebrate the first full moon of the lunar year. It is a festival to pray for a year of peace and prosperity.
Nearly 1,200 people join the carnival in different costumes as they parade from 4:30 p.m. around Chinatown streets in District 5. The first Chinese migrants came to the area in 1698 as they fled from the Qing Dynasty and more have come since to develop an area of rich Chinese culture. Ho Chi Minh government last year recognized Chinatown’s biggest market Binh Tay as a heritage site. 
Women dressed as goddesses walk on stilts along the street. Other aspects of Chinese culture promoted at the carnival are lion dance, fan dance and Beijing opera (Jingju). 
 Some of the dancers come from the neighboring Dong Nai Province.
Young girls in Chinese ethnic costumes. 
Some famous Beijing opera characters can be seen at the parade. 
The city’s most famous lion dance troupes are all present at the festival.
 Locals are excited by the appearance of characters in Chinese novel “Journey to the West.” A TV  adaptation of the novel is beloved by generations in Vietnam.
There's a lot of love for the Monkey King from “Journey to the West.” 
 A performer has a quick break during the parade.
 Police block vehicles from the parade area.
You can find the original Vietnamese story here on Zing.

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