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Cham people in Binh Thuan celebrate Kate Festival

The Kate Festival is the most important festival of the Cham community in Vietnam. The Cham celebrate their holiday with traditional rites, prayers, games, contests, dances and music over several days at the end of September or early October each year (the exact dates depend on the Cham calendar).

The main festivities take place at the three big Cham temple towers of Po Nagar, Po Klong Garai, and Po Rome in Ninh Thuan Province. Kate is also celebrated by the Cham community here in Binh Thuan Province, and in particular in Phan Thiet at the Po Sah Inu temple complex (Phu Hai ward). These red brick towers built in the VII and VIII century are among the oldest and the best preserved Cham structures in the country, and still in use by the local Cham communities. According to Cham tradition, Po Sah Inu, “the little goddess” was the daughter of Po Nagar whose temple stands in Nha Trang.

During the Kate Festival, the Cham Balamon and Bani people commemorate their heroes and deified kings Po Klong Garai and Po Rome, as well as their ancestors. The festival is an opportunity for the community to socialize, visit with family members and friends to wish each other good fortune in the future, and promote their cultural activities.

The festival starts on the first day of the seventh month of  the Cham calendar and lasts for three days in each temple tower. This year, the Kate festival will be held from 27 to 29 September at the Po Sah Inu towers in Phan Thiet.

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