Jul 29, 2010

Flower power pulls crowds

Thousands of Hanoians and foreign tourists flocked to Hoan Kiem Lake to contemplate the hundreds of thousands of flowers displayed at the capital’s second flower festival, which kicked off on Dec. 30.

Not only an event to welcome the forthcoming New Year, the festival is also one of 80 events in the city organised by the Culture, Sports and Tourism Department to celebrate the 1,000 th anniversary of Hanoi in 2010.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Deputy Chairwoman of Hanoi People’s Committee Ngo Thi Thanh Hang said that the event also aimed to highlight the refined flower hobby of Hanoians and promote Hanoi ’s culture.

“The festival will be memorable event for local residents and foreign tourists,” she said.

Three new Vietnam Guinness Records, which are on display at the festival, were recognised at the ceremony.

The records were granted for the longest train on an ao dai (traditional dress), the biggest rattan vase of lotus flowers and the biggest shell-inlaid wooden block presenting a royal proclamation by King Ly Thai To.

While flower designer Nguyen Manh Hung used up to 1,000 flowers to form the 10m-long train on the traditional dress, artisan Nguyen Phuong Quang from Hanoi ’s Chuong My district spent more than two years on the 6.5m-high rattan vase.

The 1.9m high and 1.3m-wide royal proclamation was completed by veteran artisan Tran Ba Nam from Hanoi ’s Phu Xuyen village, who spent three years on the work. The royal proclamation made by King Ly in 1010 states that the country’s capital will be relocated from Hoa Lu (in Ninh Binh province) to Thang Long (the former name of Hanoi ).

During the five-day event, visitors will also have a chance to see some of Hanoi ’s typical images, including the Temple of Literature and Long Bien Bridge . Replicas of these works have been created from flowers and are on display at the festival.

At the festival, visitors can see a 6m-high tower with nine dragons curving around and up, created from flowers and fruits, which represents 215 years of power of the Ly dynasty.

A tulip carpet, created from 22,000 tulips donated by the Dutch Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, Gerda Verburg, has attracted many visitors.

A flower show, entitled One Thousand Years of Thang Long – One Thousand Flowers Bloom will be held on Dec. 31 at the festival. The contest will gather competitors from 29 districts in the city, and all of the award-winning flower creations will be presented./.

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