«Va:kchai ni» Festival celebrated in the Bikin National Park
One of the goals of the National Park is the support of traditional nature use of the local aboriginals: Udege and Nanai people therefore the hunting festival is on the annual agenda. Va:kchai ni (meaning a hunter) was born long before the Park was created. It is when local hunters, fishermen, and gatherers pray to their spirits for help in the hunt.
People from Soboliny, Yasenyovy, Verkhnii Pereval villages came to the holiday to participate in different contests, games, traditional sports competition, and to try culinary treats. A ceremonial opening of the newly built eco trail also took place during the Festival. It is decorated with wood-carved sculptures of wild animals and birds and skillfully imbedded into the environment.
Va:kchai ni is celebrated twice a year: in the fall before the hunt starts and in March after the season closes.
Among the organizers were the Krasny Yar ‘s and regional authorities, Club of aboriginal hunters and fishermen, the Amur Tiger Centre, and WWF.