Granny Zhou Qiyu and her zongzi story

CCTV News

Granny Zhou Qiyu and her zongzi story1

Zongzi is a traditional food that Chinese people enjoy during the Dragon Boat Festival. However, the art of making zongzi is at a risk fewer and fewer younger people know how to make them.

CCTV’s Tao Yuan met one woman keen to keep the craft alive.

Granny Zhou Qiyu and her zongzi story

Granny Zhou Qiyu and her zongzi story

Zongzi is a traditional food that Chinese people enjoy during the Dragon Boat Festival. However, the art of making zongzi is at a risk fewer and fewer younger people know how to make them.

The process is easy: fold the leaves into a cone, fill it with sticky rice and other stuffings, wrap it and tie it up with a string.

“It was in the 1980s. My husband and I had just retired. My youngest son was unemployed, and his wife had just had a baby. I had to raise a family of five,” Zhou Qiyu, a 91-year-old woman said.

It was during that Dragon Boat Festival when Zhou Qiyu decided to started a small zongzi business together with some of her friends. In this residential complex, many families were facing a mass lay-offs.

“Everybody should make some fortune. Everybody deserves a good life,” she added.

“I was so ashamed at first. We all had jobs before. But Granny said we put food on the table through hard work,” Zhang Guiying, a follower of Zhou, said. “It’s much more decent than slacking or stealing.”

Over the years, not only did they survive their hardships but they also thrived. But for Zhou Qiyu, zongzi has become so much more than just a livelihood.


How tradition is being kept alive in China’s Dayi County

The Dragon Boat Festival is marked in different ways in different regions of China.

For example, people in Dayi County, Sichuan Province mark the day by practicing tai chi and wearing incense bags. CCTV’s Meng Qingsheng reports.

How tradition is being kept alive in China\'s Dayi County

How tradition is being kept alive in China\'s Dayi County

The Dragon Boat Festival is marked in different ways in different regions of China. For example, people in Dayi County, Sichuan Province mark the day by practicing tai chi and wearing incense bags. CCTV's Meng Qingsheng reports.

A thousand people have gathered there to practice Tai Chi. It’s a way to celebrate the traditional Dragon Boat Festival. It’s also aimed to enhance their immunity and keep a balanced body and mind.


Dr. Ann Rosen Spector on China Dragon Boat Festival

It’s believed Dragon Boat Festival has been celebrated in China for thousands of years. So why do some believe the traditions are just now in danger of fading? CCTV America’s Mike Walter spoke to Dr. Ann Rosen Spector.