Full moon fun: Are you ready to howl?This Jeongwol Daeboreum, the first full moon of the lunar calendar, make a wish upon the moon. Look for the lucky moon on Tuesday, or check out one of the following spots around Korea for a slightly early weekend of traditional fun.
Jeju Island is famous for its wind, stones and women. But during Jeongwol Daeboreum, Jeju is famous for something else - fire.
For native residents who depend on cattle-breeding, the moon symbolizes the beginning of next year's business. Cattlemen prepare the fields at this time by burning the land, using the fire to exterminate insects and destroy weeds.
While the grown-ups were busy setting fire to the fields, children played jwibul nori - lighting a fire inside a tin can and whirling it around on a wire.
This weekend, the tradition comes alive in the Fire Festival. Islanders and visitors climb Saebyeol Oreum, one of the volcano hills at the northern part of the island, and set fire to the ridgeline pasture. The festival is also a chance to watch horseback riding competitions and fireworks, and to play jwibul nori.
The festivities are Saturday to Sunday. For more information, call 064-741-0432.
Modu Tour Agency offers discounted round-trip plane tickets for 119,000 won ($90). For more information, call 02-752-9494.
YONGIN FOLK VILLAGE
The delicacies of choice for the holiday are ogokbap, a five grain dish prepared with rice, sweet rice, red bean, black bean, and sorghum, and yakbap, rice cakes with chestnuts and dried dates.
After dining on a full meal, another traditional activity is to write a wish on a piece of paper and burn it on top of straw and pine tree branches under the full moon.
You can experience these traditions at the Yongin Korean Folk Village. Organizers are hosting a Full Moon Festival from Sunday to Tuesday. During the festival, visitors can make traditional kites, and play jegi chagi, the Korean version of Hackysack.
The Korean Folk Village is in Yongin, Gyeonggi province. For more information, call 031-286-2111.
Hwaseong Fortress used to be the place to go for the Daeboreum in Suwon. Festivities included yut nori, a stick-tossing game, jegi chagi, neol ttwigi, a seesaw jumping game and yeon nalligi, kite flying.
This year, the kite flying section has been expanded into an international kite flying competition. Special for the World Cup, the Daeboreum festivities have been moved to the Suwon World Cup Stadium parking lot. "We needed space to fly kites," the organizers said.
On Saturday, events are from 2 to 5 p.m. On Sunday, events are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 031-244-2161.
by Joe Yong-hee, Chun Su-jin
with the Korea JoongAng Daily
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