A grand sacrificial ceremony to mark the Winter Solstice is held in Yangjia village, Sanmen county, Taizhou, East China’s Zhejiang province.
There was a saying in ancient China, “The Winter Solstice is just as significant as the Spring Festival.”
The traditional Chinese lunar calendar divides the year into 24 solar terms. Winter Solstice, or Dongzhi, the 22nd solar term of the year, falls on Dec 21 this year.
A number of activities were held in Taizhou, East China’s Zhejiang province to celebrate the event, the most renowned of which was the Winter Solstice sacrificial ceremony, staged in Yangjia village, Sanmen county each year.
The ceremony primarily consists of sacrificial offerings to Heaven and family ancestors, drama performances, and banquets showing respect to village elders.
The grand ceremony, which has a history of more than 700 years, was listed as a national intangible cultural heritage in 2014.
This is also the time of year when locals begin to eat Dongzhiyuan, a local snack named after the Winter Solstice. The food is similar to Tangyuan, a type of small stuffed dumpling made of glutinous rice flour, but it is cooked differently and uses different fillings.
Dongzhiyuan is prepared differently in different parts of the city.
Dongzhiyuan, a local snack named after the Winter Solstice, in Taizhou, East China’s Zhejiang