Nantou marks festival with 19-ton rice cake
By Lauly Li, The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- Nantou County's Mingchien Township and Shoutien Temple (受天宮) celebrated the Lantern Festival yesterday by unveiling a giant, peach-shaped sticky rice cake (米糕桃), weighing over 19 tons.
February 25, 2013, 12:05 am TWN
Apart from the huge rice cake being offered in the temple, Nantou County Magistrate Chen Chih-ching (陳志清) and Shoutien Temple representative Wu Wen-hsiung (吳文雄) led porters wearing traditional wide-brimmed rain hats carrying the smaller rice cakes with shoulder poles from the temple's ceremonial arch to the temple and present it to the divinities.
The porters were specially “approved” by the gods by divination blocks.
Wu said it is a long-held tradition for the area's residents to carry the sticky rice cake with a shoulder pole to the temple on the Lantern Festival and pray for luck and health.
The event has continued to grow in popularity since Shoutien Temple first held the celebration in 1996 by displaying a small sticky rice cake at the temple on the Lantern Festival, the representative of the temple said. The size of the sticky rice cake has increased every year, he added.
According to local officials, after a special Lantern Festival prayer ceremony, the giant sticky rice cake will be cut up and divided into small pieces to around 35,000 people.