Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Wet ending to Kaamatan

PENAMPANG: Invariably the largest event of its kind in Sabah, Kaamatan, or the Harvest Festival, culminated yesterday in the full spirit of revelry and celebration.

Keeping up with the carnival-like feel that has been set as the tone for the festival’s contemporary editions, Kaamatan is a Kadazandusun rite of spiritual rejuvenation and gratitude that is held to ensure a bountiful harvest.

A continuing project of the Kadazandusun Cultural Association (KDCA), 2010’s festival was greeted by heavy rain, which, not surprisingly, did nothing to dampen the atmosphere.

The most prominent of the Kaamatan celebrations is the state-level main festival held at Penampang’s Hongkod Koisaan (Unity Hall) and typically features a remarkable assortment of stalls and booths that offer food, beverages, games and shopping.

This amounts to a large bazaar for the enjoyment of visitors to the festival, which is composed of a strong representation of the Kadazandusun people, other locals, and quite a few tourists from West Malaysia and beyond.

Kaamatan is rooted in the story of Huminodun, a beautiful maiden who sacrificed herself to end a lasting period of drought and save her community.

This tale is also the inspiration for the Unduk Ngadau, a statewide beauty pageant. Kaamatan is essentially an offering to the spirits of nature in anticipation of good crop.

Continue reading at: Wet ending to Kaamatan

No comments: