The Dragon Boat Festival is usually celebrated on the fifth day of the fifth month of the lunar calendar. However, this year, nothing is usual, so due to Melbourne’s circuit-breaker lockdown, the Museum held its Dragon Boat Festival on the last Sunday in June. 

And what a fun day it was! Melbourne families turned out to celebrate the event and we welcomed over 600 happy customers through our door on the day. We also conducted interviews on preserving our Chinese cultural heritage and filmed the day.  

Our Dragon Boat program started with a story about the legend of Qu yuan. Then we had a zongzi making demonstration and learned why this tasty rice dumpling is eaten on this day.  A short, guided tour about the Dragon Boat Festival followed and then participants young and old delighted in having their photo taken in our Dragon Boat. The photo was given as free polaroid that served as a fun memento of the day.  And if this weren’t enough action, everyone could then wander at their leisure through other levels of the Museum, including the dragon gallery, Han Dynasty gallery, One Million Stories Exhibition, and Finding Gold exhibition.

In Chinatown, there were lion dances and a real working dragon boat on display, thanks to Dragon Boat Victoria. The Lord Mayor Sally Capp also visited Chinatown and encouraged all Melbournians to come back into the city.

The Museum team of staff, volunteers and supporters had a great day, working hard and seeing all the lovely faces of our enthusiastic visitors. Thank you to our event partners The Greater Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust, Melbourne Chinatown Precinct Association, Dragon Boat Victoria, Chinese Youth Society of Melbourne, and Department of Families, Fairness and Housing for helping make this event happen!

We hope to see everyone at the Museum again soon!

Stay alert for more upcoming events and exhibitions.