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Five Local Traditions to Celebrate Independence Day in Indonesia

Five Local Traditions to Celebrate Independence Day in Indonesia

Indonesia's unparalleled uniqueness shines through its mosaic of diverse cultures, thriving due to meticulous local preservation. This rich tapestry gives rise to a plethora of captivating traditions across the archipelago, spanning from holistic wellness practices to elaborate ceremonial revelries. In commemoration of Indonesia's revered Independence Day on August 17th, discover these enthralling customs, integral to the national holiday's celebration.

Telok Abang, Palembang
On the day of festivity's dawn, the vibrant streets of Palembang come alive with local vendors showcasing traditional handicrafts, notably the iconic "telok abang" or "red egg" creations. These eggs, brilliantly dyed in striking red hues, find artistic placement within miniature models of ships, airplanes, rickshaws, and trains.

Teluk abang miniature boats | Genpi

This tradition, with its origins in Queen Wilhelmina's birthday celebration during the Dutch Colonial Era, has evolved post-independence. The red dye symbolizes courage, while the egg's pure white interior mirrors Indonesia's iconic Red and White Flag, symbolizing purity.

Jampana Parade, Bandung
The "Pawai Jampana" or Jampana Parade stands as a heartfelt expression of gratitude for the bountiful harvest and a poignant tribute to Indonesia's historic Independence Day in Bandung. A lively procession unfolds, featuring an array of large stretchers adorned with crops, indigenous crafts, and delectable local fare.

Jampana parade | kapol.id

Carried by four individuals each, these stretchers become the focal point of friendly contests among parade participants and spectators, culminating in a communal feast that exudes joy and unity.

Torch Estafet, Semarang
Semarang, in Central Java, ushers in the exuberant "Obor Estafet" tradition, where the local populace, along with accomplished athletes, engages in a spirited torch relay race. This celebratory event honors the tenacious spirit of Indonesia's freedom fighters.

Torch estafet | Pemkot Semarang

Spanning over three decades, this torch relay competition serves as a powerful embodiment of patriotic resilience in the face of daily struggles, inviting audiences to partake in this dynamic and spirited festivity.

Peresean, Lombok
Lombok Island, in its bid to honor Indonesia's Independence Day, hosts the annual Peresean competition, showcasing celebrated "pepadu" or gladiators who showcase their agility in a captivating display. Rooted in the traditions of the Sasak people in West Nusa Tenggara, Peresean brings together competitors from diverse corners of Lombok, wielding rattan rods and shields crafted from the hides of cows or buffaloes.

Peresean | Go Mandalika

Beyond its intense competitive nature, Peresean imparts a profound moral lesson—a rite of passage, testing camaraderie and valor between two men. This engaging tradition has also captured the fascination of both domestic and international tourists visiting Lombok.

Rowing competition, Banjarmasin
In the heart of South Kalimantan, the vibrant city of Banjarmasin hosts the captivating "Lomba Dayung Perahu Naga" or Dragon Boat Rowing Competition. This annual spectacle unfolds on the enchanting Martapura River, tracing its origins back to 1924. Far from just an entertainment segment of the Independence Day celebrations, this event also doubles as a talent scouting platform for future rowing athletes.

Rowing competition | Indonesia heritage cities

While it began as a local endeavor, the competition's allure has attracted participants from neighboring provinces and beyond, signifying its enduring appeal and significance.

Akhyari Hananto

I began my career in the banking industry in 1997, and stayed approx 6 years in it. This industry boost his knowledge about the economic condition in Indonesia, both macro and micro, and how to More understand it. My banking career continued in Yogyakarta when I joined in a program funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB),as the coordinator for a program aimed to help improve the quality of learning and teaching process in private universities in Yogyakarta. When the earthquake stroke Yogyakarta, I chose to join an international NGO working in the area of ?disaster response and management, which allows me to help rebuild the city, as well as other disaster-stricken area in Indonesia. I went on to become the coordinator for emergency response in the Asia Pacific region. Then I was assigned for 1 year in Cambodia, as a country coordinator mostly to deliver developmental programs (water and sanitation, education, livelihood). In 2009, he continued his career as a protocol and HR officer at the U.S. Consulate General in Surabaya, and two years later I joined the Political and Economic Section until now, where i have to deal with extensive range of people and government officials, as well as private and government institution troughout eastern Indonesia. I am the founder and Editor-in-Chief in Good News From Indonesia (GNFI), a growing and influential social media movement, and was selected as one of The Most Influential Netizen 2011 by The Marketeers magazine. I also wrote a book on "Fundamentals of Disaster Management in 2007"?, "Good News From Indonesia : Beragam Prestasi Anak Bangsa di dunia"? which was luanched in August 2013, and "Indonesia Bersyukur"? which is launched in Sept 2013. In 2014, 3 books were released in which i was one of the writer; "Indonesia Pelangi Dunia"?, "Indonesia The Untold Stories"? and "Growing! Meretas Jalan Kejayaan" I give lectures to students in lectures nationwide, sharing on full range of issues, from economy, to diplomacy Less
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