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Toucheng "Qianggu"-Grappling with the Ghost pole-climbing competition

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  • Toucheng“Cianggu”  Year:2013  Author:CHEN,ZI-QING  Source:A Glance at Taiwan
  • Grappling with the Ghost pole-climbing competition  Year:2017  Source:Yilan County Government
  • Toucheng
  • Releasing Water Lanterns  Year:2017  Source:Yilan County Government
  • Toucheng
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This activity has been temporarily suspended in 2020.
Sponsor:
Ghost Festival Association, Toucheng Township, Yilan County
Address:
Wenxiaoyi Cultural Park (Qianggu field), Toucheng Township, Yilan County

Starting in the Qing dynasty, there has been a custom of people seizing sacrificial goods after the Ghost Festival is over. Some say this is to scare away lingering spirits, and is known as “Qianggu” (ghost grappling). The Qianggu competition held in Toucheng is Taiwan’s largest and one of Yilan’s important traditional events during the seventh lunar month. The tower consists of pillars made of China fir, 11 meters tall and 8 meters wide, with 7 or 8 meter bamboo trestlework on top. Squid, rice dumplings, rice noodles, meat, fish, and other foods are tied to the trestlework. Team members must climb on top of each other to reach the top of the trestlework and pillars, which are covered in oil. Reaching the top, they cut down the food and throw it to the frame below, where it is taken by spectators. Whoever claims the wind banner at the top is declared the winner. There are a variety of other events, including the water lantern old street tour, releasing water lanterns into Zhu’an River a day before the ghost gates close, and Beiguan Battle. There is a period of one month between the first day when the ghost gates open and the last day when Qianggu is held. In addition to remembering the ancestors and their pioneering efforts, the month includes a variety of religious traditional and folk culture events.

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Last update time: 2020-07-13
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