We are celebrating indigenous people through their traditional arts forms in Borneo Native Festival this year, hosted by SukaSeni. It will be a great opportunity for us, as tourists and locals, to experience local culture by getting hands-on with various cultural activities.
The inaugural Borneo Native Festival to be held in Kuala Lumpur next weekend will not only showcase native culture but also Sabah’s economy. The festival marks the start of the weeklong Kaamatan festivities celebrated throughout Sarawak and Sabah.
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Happening from May 20th – May 22nd, 2022.
Sukaseni founder and festival organiser Rafie Syazwan Arpandi said between May 20 and 22, 70 vendors from Sabah and Sarawak would promote handicrafts, food and beverages among others to tourists visiting the Central Market.
“The aim of our event is to support and create awareness on how important it is to protect the environment while preserving these unique cultures,” Sukaseni commented, he also added, “We hope that more tourist attractions such as these will be developed so they become permanent fixtures within the city of Kuala Lumpur.”
This type of festival will also encourage more job opportunity as agents or traders can sell dropship goods with various Borneon products at the venue itself. This is because they are rare and hard to find in West Malaysia due to its rarity.
What can we expect to see in Borneo Native Festival?
The BNF’s line-up includes over 70 vendors, 20 performers, five cultural organisations, 15 government agencies and 20 craft makers, artisans, dancers and historians.
There will be an array of items available ranging from handcrafted wooden carvings, jewellery pieces, woven baskets, bead necklaces, fabrics, batik, songket cloth, paintings and other accessories. The crafts displayed here have no equivalent elsewhere in the world; hence visitors should take home some souvenirs once they leave the market.
Aside from selling high quality artisanal craftworks, there will also be stalls offering delicious native delicacies like ‘Pisang Goreng’, fried banana fritters, ‘Pulut Hitam’ (black glutinous rice) and ‘Kuih Cili padi’.
Other popular dishes include ‘Satay’, grilled chicken skewers dipped in peanut sauce, ‘Keropok lekor’, deep fried fish balls served with sambal and ‘Nasi Padang’, steamed coconut rice mixed with vegetables. There will also be plenty of drinks offered including fresh fruit juices, tea and coffee.
“Our target audience includes both Malaysians who are interested in buying something different, and foreigners looking for exotic gifts. We want to bring back memories of those special moments when you were young, experiencing things you never thought possible!” remarked a Sabahan that is set to open his stall in BNF.
What type of experience can we look forward to in Borneo Native Festival?
You may feel overwhelmed walking around the entire area since everything looks amazing! There will be live music performances where one could enjoy the beautiful harmonies sung by talented musicians.
Aside from the musical performances, guests might get lucky if they spot a couple of performing dancers wearing colourful costumes dancing to the rhythm of drums accompanied by rhythmic chanting.
The three day celebration aims to raise funds for local communities, empowering them to continue making wonderful works of art without any financial constraints.
It seems that everyone wants to be a part of this exciting new event. With such positive feedback, it’s safe to say that this year’s edition is going to be bigger than ever before.
“I am really excited to be invited again to participate in the first Borneo Native Festival organised by Sukaseni. I love meeting fellow artists from Sabah and Sarawak and sharing knowledge about my country’s heritage,” a stall keeper commented.
So what are you waiting for? Come visit Borneo Native Festival and let yourself indulge in all the fun!