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Ethnic tradition leaves people smiling, and wet

By Yang Jun in Guiyang and Chen Meiling | chinadaily.com.cn| Updated: 2020-07-30 Print

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Participants are doused with water and wishes for good fortune, a good harvest, peace and prosperity. It's part of local folk custom. [Photo by Zheng Xiongzeng /provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Hundreds of people participated in a water-splashing carnival in Dejiang county, Guizhou province, on Sunday in which residents paraded around with dragons made of grass and others soaked them and each other.

It's a traditional folk custom - the Water Dragon Festival - of the Tujia ethnic group. It stems from an old prayer ritual asking for rain and comes every June 6 according to the Chinese lunar calendar.

Equipped with ladles, basins and water guns - and even tanker trucks - people prowl the streets during the festival, playing with the 36 dancing dragons and hoping for good fortune, a good harvest, peace and prosperity.

This year's festival was held from Saturday to Monday. In addition to the parade, there were cultural performances, exhibitions and sales of local food and agricultural products, cultural works contests, livestreams and forums.

The festival is a provincial-level intangible cultural heritage. Most residents in Dejiang county belong to the Tujia.

Wang Jin contributed to this story.

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