Preserving Traditional Heritage for a Noble Civilization
PTFI Participation in the 2016 Lake Sentani Festival
Brilliant sunlight shimmered on the lake’s surface waters. Green hills rising along the shores of the lake with a background of bright blue skies added to the charm of Papua’s biggest lake. Despite the blazing sun, thousands of people thronged to Khalkote Wharf in the village of Kampung Harapan to attend the biggest annual event in Lake Sentani. This year, the 9th Lake Sentani Festival, Jayapura Regency’s biggest cultural festival was held at Khalkote Wharf in Kampung Harapan, Lake Sentani from June 19 to June 23, 2016.
The Lake Sentani Festival is a cultural event showcasing the diverse and rich cultures of Papua, featuring fascinating traditional dances, striking and enticing traditional arts and crafts, and the unique and intriguing cuisine of Papua.
The beautiful dance performances were the most awaited by Lake Sentani Festival visitors. They featured not only the traditional dances of tribes inhabiting the shores of Lake Sentani and Jayapura Regency, but also the traditional dances from other regions in Papua and West Papua.
The five-day festival organized by the Jayapura Regency Tourism and Cultural Office Festival is expected not only to draw global attention to the culture, richness, diversity and kinship of Papua, but also to drive economic growth and promote the welfare of the population without relinquishing their cultural identity and heritage.
This year, PT Freeport Indonesia once again supported the Lake Sentani Festival. In this ninth Lake Sentani Festival in 2016, PTFI participation took the form of a booth on Kamoro culture and presentation of traditional Kamoro dance performances that drew clucks of admiration from spectators at the sight of the energetic and lively moves. Many visitors enthusiastically looked forward to getting to know more about Kamoro culture, including Jayapura Regent Bapak Mathius Awoitauw, who paid a special visit to the PTFI booth.
Out of the numerous dances performed, the most attractive and most awaited was the colossal Isosolo dance. It is a specific Sentani dance performed aboard canoes. This is a well-preserved tradition to honor the ondoafi, or customary chiefs in Sentani. Villagers from around Lake Sentani bring their best produce aboard gaily decorated canoes and dance and sing animatedly.
A noble civilization is one that judiciously glorifies and preserves its cultural heritage. PTFI aims to make maximum contributions to culture, primarily the customary cultures of Papua, through preservation and promotion of the customs and traditions of the indigenous population to the world. Through the Lake Sentani Festival, PTFI is partnering with the government to realize its commitment to further promote and preserve the indigenous cultures of Papua. (Miko Sularso)
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