The Jakarta Post
Performers at the Dayak Festival in 2018. The 34th annual festival is being held at Rumah Radakng, Pontianak, West Kalimantan, until May 26. (Kompas.com/Yohanes Kurnia Irawan)
The 34th Dayak Festival was officiated by West Kalimantan Governor Sutarmidji and National Dayak Customary Council president Cornelis, along with members of Forkopimda at Rumah Radakng, Pontianak, West Kalimantan.
In his speech, Sutarmidji stated his commitment to holding the cultural festival annually.
“We provide material support in addition to moral support. This event has become a local tourism event, so we will continuously support it,” he said Monday as quoted by kompas.com. https://travel.kompas.com/read/2019/05/21/120000427/pekan-gawai-dayak-ke-34-dibuka-upaya-genjot-kunjungan-wisatawan-
The festival has attracted both local and international tourists, reflected by the high number of visitors to Pontianak from neighboring countries such as Malaysia and Brunei Darussalam, as well as visitors from Europe.
“This has a clear positive impact on our tourism. Hotels are fully booked, restaurants and eateries are full and this benefits us in the growth of the local economy,” he added.
Held during Ramadan, the festival’s schedule was adjusted to accommodate those observing the holy month. From maghrib (sunset prayer) until tarawih (evening Ramadan prayers), activities are suspended.
“As the governor, I’m open to any kind of cultural activity in West Kalimantan. The organizers have also made adjustments to the schedule in respect of Muslims who are fasting,” Sutarmidji said. “There will be no activities on May 22nd, the schedule will be adjusted,” he added. The provincial government is said to have budgeted Rp 300 million to support the festival under the West Kalimantan Tourism Office.
Meanwhile, according to Cornelis, the festival is held to show how food, human development and tourism can be useful for the country.
“We showcase food, human development and tourism issues in this festival so that people have more knowledge about their own culture.”
Cornelis calls for locals to go back to the fields and strengthen food production in West Kalimantan to avoid a global food crisis.
“We have to partner with the government to avoid a food crisis,” he said.
The festival will be held at Rumah Radakng until May 26. The festival features various Dayak cultural activities and performances from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. (asw)
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