Dragon Boat Festival

Dragon Boat Festival also known Duanwu Jie falls on the fifth day on fifth lunar month of every year. This year, it corresponds to June 20. Since 2008, it has been considered a public holiday. Main activities during this time include eating zongzi (steamed glutinous rice with various fillings wrapped in reed or bamboo leaves), drinking xionghuang jiu ( a kind of alcohol made from realgar) and watching dragon boat races.
There are many legends about the origins of the festival, but the most popular one tells that the festival was established to commemorate the death of the poet, Qu Yuan.
Qu Yuan, lived between 340 and 278 BC. He was a poet in the State of Chu. The State of Qin was trying to take control of Chu during that period, so Qu Yuan tried to strengthen Chu’s military forces.
However, he was opposed by some aristocrats, deposed and exiled by King Huai. In 278 BC, when Qin finally conquered Chu, Qu Yuan killed himself. On the fifth day of the fifth lunar month, he drowned himself in the Miluo River.
The people of Chu admired the poet’s actions, and threw zongzi and xionghuang jiu in the water to keep fish away from Qu Yuan’s body. Fishermen sailed their boats up and down the river, looking for him. And from this, the customs of dragon boat racing, eating zongzi and drinking xionghuang jiu came about.