The Hmong New Year celebration is a cultural tradition that takes place annually, in North Carolina, it’s usually held the week before and the week of Thanksgiving, traditionally it is held at the end of the harvest season when all work is done. This is my first time attending a Hmong New Year, second for Bo and Lee, I was in Thailand last year and Bo went with his mom and Lee.
During the Hmong New Year celebration, the Hmong ball tossing game pov pob is a common activity for adolescents, but I noticed that older couples also play this game as well. Boys and girls form two separate lines in pairs that are directly facing one another. Girls can ball toss with other girls or boys, but boys cannot ball toss with other boys. It is also taboo to toss the ball to someone of the same clan. The pairs toss a cloth ball back and forth, until one member drops the ball. If a player drops or misses the ball, an ornament or item is given to the opposite player in the pair. Ornaments are recovered by singing love songs (hais kwv txhiaj) to the opposite player. (Source and to read more about the Hmong New Year)
I’m fascinated with so many people, both young and old dressing in a traditional clothing at the festival.
There were many beautiful Hmong traditional outfits for sale, and Lee had her eye on them, but a bit pricey for me.
Lee was not happy when I told her it was too small.
I’m not familiar with the Hmong outfit, sort of made a fool of myself and picked out one for a male, she said it was for ‘Pou Sai’ (a male in Lao language), I told her that I wanted one for ‘Pou Ying’ (a female). She handed me this piece, finally Lee was happy with what she saw, my second sister tried it on for her to see. I had to dig deep into my pocket, $50 for this small piece.
She definitely needs the whole outfit, I think it costs almost $300 for a complete outfit, maybe I’ll try to make one for her next year.
Beautiful embroidery piece.
Blankets that tell stories.
I was looking for a Hmong bag, but these are not my style so I didn’t buy any.
The Entertainment area was packed, I had to squeeze my way in just to take this picture.
Food vendors were busy, this one grilling, as you can see for many people.
The longan fruits were fresh, for $5 per pound I could only afford 2 pounds.