"Dangmeikongpu" & mule-and-horse trade in July.
"Dangmeikongpu" is from Naxi language, which means "White Sand Temple Fair". According to legend, it was formed in the period of the local headman Mu in Ming Dynasty. On the 20th of the first month in lunar calendar every year, the White Sand Temple Fair is held on schedule and it lasts 5-7 days. When the time comes, the Taibaoji Palace, the Glazed Hall and the Dading Pavilion are all open for people to offer incense and enjoy the sight of murals. Stores in the street are placed with articles of daily use and steel, iron, bamboo or wooden utensils. People bustle about and vie with each other in buying objects. So the "Dangmeikongpu" festival is actually an interflow of commodities before spring ploughing in the local Naxis.
The mule and horse trade in July is another traditional festival for the Naxis. The Naxis have had a fine tradition of raising horses since ancient times. Their horse caravans used to exist for several hundreds of years without decline, and they reached near places like Dali and Kunming and far places like Lahsa in Xizang. In the 15th year of the Hongwu time in Ming Dynasty, the local headman Mude of Lijiang went to Nanjing for himself and paid Lijiang horse as tribute to the emperor, and the Lijiang horse was well-known since then. Now in addition to the Naxis, Lisus, Pumis, and Hans of the county, Bais, Zangs and Yis from near counties come to take part in the trade, and Hans from the interior are big customers. With the development of reforming and opening, much content is added into the mule and horse trade, such as holding entertaining activities like holding national sports meeting at the same time, playing national singing, dancing and drama, undertaking painting and calligraphy exhibition and organizing Lijiang old music show and antiphonal singing of fold songs. All these make the content of the traditional festival much richer, and they become an important measure for promoting prosper of the local economy and culture.
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