Published: 12:49, May 16, 2024 | Updated: 11:40, May 16, 2024
Yip, Kung become HK's 'king', 'queen' of bun scrambling
By Wang Zhan and Xinhua
Yip Kin-man (left) and Kung Tsz-shan, the respective male and female champions, pose with their trophies after the final of the bun scrambling competition in Cheung Chau, Hong Kong, early on May 16, 2024. (PHOTO / HKSAR GOVERNMENT)

HONG KONG - Yip Kin-man and Kung Tsz-shan became the men's and women's champions respectively in the bun scrambling competition held early on Thursday in Hong Kong's Cheung Chau island.

In the men's event, Chung Yuk-chuen emerged the first runner-up while Leung Wan-chung the second runner-up.

Nine-time champion Kwok Ka-ming became the winner of "full pockets of lucky buns", despite failing to clinch his 10th title. 

The grand finale of the 2024 Bun Carnival attracted more than 1,600 spectators to the city's southern island. Total 12 finalists scrambled up the bun tower to gather as many buns as they could in three minutes.

Contestants take part in the bun scrambling competition in Cheung Chau, Hong Kong, early on May 16, 2024. (ADAM LAM / CHINA DAILY)

Apart from the individual race, there was also an invitation relay, where three teams from Shenzhen, Zhuhai and the Macao Special Administrative Region competed against seven local teams from Cheung Chau.

Running from May 12-16 this year, the Cheung Chau Bun Festival, one of the city's most colorful cultural celebration events, has been on the national list of intangible cultural heritage since 2011. For residents of Cheung Chau, this is an important annual event.

Firecrackers ignite ahead of the bun scrambling competition in Cheung Chau, Hong Kong, on May 15, 2024. (ADAM LAM / CHINA DAILY)

At 1:30 pm on Wednesday, the Piu Sik parade, one of the highlights of the Bun Festival, with children dressed up as deities and celebrities on stilts, set off from the island's Pak Tai Temple.

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Accompanied by the sound of gongs and drums, the young actors waved and handed out sweets to the crowd, attracting many to take pictures.

"My father used to take part in the parade and I played a role in it when I was a kid," said a resident from Hong Kong Island who identified himself only as Cheung.

A child performs at the Piu Sik parade during the Cheung Chau Da Jiu Festival in Cheung Chau Island, Hong Kong, on May 15, 2024. (ADAM LAM / CHINA DAILY)

This year, Cheung took his wife and children to watch the parade, hoping that they could experience the charm of the traditional culture.

A string of exciting activities - including watching Piu Sik parade and bun scrambling competition, tasting the festival's signature buns, and more - took place during the festival, attracting a large number of people to Cheung Chau and bringing business opportunities to the small island.

People perform a lion dance at the Piu Sik parade during the Cheung Chau Da Jiu Festival in Cheung Chau Island, Hong Kong, on May 15, 2024. (ADAM LAM / CHINA DAILY)

According to Sun Ferry, which operated the route between Hong Kong Island and Cheung Chau, as of 5 pm local time, the number of passengers increased by 12.5 percent compared with the same period last year.

"I hope Hong Kong can organize more activities to promote traditional culture," said a Hong Kong resident surnamed Ho who watched the parade every year.

A woman stamp freshly steamed Ping On buns with Chinese characters "ping on" during the Cheung Chau Da Jiu Festival in Cheung Chau Island, Hong Kong, on May 15, 2024. (ADAM LAM / CHINA DAILY)

Another Hong Kong resident who preferred to be named as Kwok,  owner of a bakery selling buns symbolizing peace and well-being, started bun-making workshops last September to promote the Bun Festival and has attracted around 20,000 people to join.

READ MORE: Bun scrambling competition held in Cheung Chau

Kwok said that there were more visitors to Cheung Chau than expected this year. His shop opened at about 6 am local time and all buns were sold out within two hours.