Sat. Jul 13th, 2024

The Chinese Lantern Festival will light up Tingha on Saturday 4th March for the first time in four years.

The Chinese Lantern Festival, held at the end of the Lunar New Year, acknowledges the influence the Chinese community had in shaping the small village. The festival hasn’t been held since 2019 as a result of devastating fires on the Tingha Plateau and the pandemic restrictions that cancelled most of the region’s events in the past couple of years.

Tingha was once home to a thriving Chinese community thanks to a tin mining boom in the region. At the peak of the tin boom in the 1870s, Tingha was the largest tin producing area in NSW, with over 8000 people woking on mines that stretched for 8 kilometres. There were 2,000 Chinese migrants seeking to make their fortunes among those workers. Though most of the Chinese migrants left, some descendents and their spirit remains.

The Tingha Citizens Association, with support from the NSW Government, are organising the festival gates which will begin at 5:30pm on the 4th of March on the grounds of the Tingha Sports and Recreation Club. A Chinese chef will be cooking a smorgasbord meal, always the highlight of the previously annual event.

Colleen Graham, from the Tingha Citizens Association, is excited to rekindle the townships respect for the Chinese people that contributed to the formation of modern-day Tingha.

“The festival is to commemorate the Chinese that were in Tingha in the early mining days.”

“There were more Chinese than English, and they made a huge impression in Tingha.”

The festival will hope to be enjoyable and educational and in addition to the fantastic Chinese food, will include lantern making workshops, dragon dancing, fireworks and screening of an historical film.

Ms Graham said that representatives from the Chinese Consulate will be present at the warmly regarded event. She also said that many Expats have contacted her to ask for a table to be reserved for the festival, and it would be great to have more Chinese living in Australia, or Australians who have lived in China, attend the celebrations.

Anyone seeking further details, contact Colleen Graham on 6723 3556.

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