The Ha Nhi Ethnic Group in Dien Bien Province are celebrating their traditional new year festival, Ho Su Cha.
There are two main groups of Ha Nhi in Dien Bien Province including Ha Nhi La Mi and Ha Nhi Co Cho. Ha Nhi people live in Sin Thau, Chung Chai, Sen Thuong and Leng Su Sin communes of Muong Nhe District. The Ha Nhi people have many festivals but the Ho Su Cha is their new year festival and one of their most important festivals.
This year, the Ho Su Cha Festival is being held in Dien Bien Province from December 15 to 17 after the harvesting season. On the first day, all of the households made Cha Le cakes to offer to the ancestors, marking the start of a new year. The new year Cha Le cakes must also be bigger than normal. Afterwards, the families started cooking other foods and offering them to their guests.
Pork is a must on the new-year offering tray. Families who couldn’t buy pork had to ask relatives for help. A bright-colour pig liver means good things and a large gallbladder means good livestock and a happy family.
On the second day, the Ha Nhi people made day cake, or ga ba cake. During these days, Ha Nhi people visited each other’s houses to give new-year wishes.
Nguyen Quang Hung, party secretary of Muong Nhe District People’s Committee, said, “This year, we decided to hold the Ho Su Cha Festival at Ta Mieu Village, Sin Chau Commune, for all groups of Ha Nhi. We aim to turn this village into a festival venue for Ha Nhi people and other 10 ethnic groups in the area.”
Some photos of the festival:
Making day cakes to offer to ancestors
Annual offering ceremony at a temple in Ta Mieu Village
Ha Nhi girls in new clothes for the new year festival
Ha Nhi people enjoy folk games at the festival.
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