Feature: Rural sports boost cultural inheritance in SW China

(Xinhua) 09:41, October 30, 2023

GUIYANG, Oct. 30 (Xinhua) -- The finals of the Village Basketball Competition of China, known as "CunBA," recently tipped off in Taipan Village, Taijiang County of southwest China's Guizhou Province.

Not far away from the basketball court, dozens of stalls sell various handicrafts to many basketball fans and tourists who come to watch the finals.

Shi Chuanying, 45, an inheritor of Miao embroidery from Shidong Town, Taijiang County, came to the market with her family to display and sell her embroidery and basketball-related handicrafts.

A large colorful framed embroidery on the booth vividly shows the grand event of the "CunBA" competition, attracting visitors to admire it.

"The 'CunBA' has brought us economic benefits. Whether coaches, athletes or tourists, as long as they come to watch the games, they will buy our hand-made products. For 'CunBA', we also specially designed a plant-dyed cotton T-shirt with hand-made embroidery, which is very popular," said Shi.

In order to bring more products, Shi returned to her store and prepared for sales. She opened the store ten years ago, which features many Miao silver jewelry and embroidery products.

"In the past, Taijiang County saw many tourists only when we held important festivals. In other days, tourists were few. Right now, tourists who visit the "CunBA" basketball event will also go shopping in the county to buy embroidery, batik and other cultural and creative products," said Shi, adding that during the games, the total retail sales of her products reached 70,000 yuan (9,500 U.S. dollars).

"In the future, I want to develop and design more basketball-related cultural and creative products, so that our Miao people's culture can better go out. And with the help of the 'CunBA' brand, I will help to promote and publicize our ethnic culture," said Shi.

The local basketball event made Taipan Village famous and attracted thousands of basketball fans to come. This event has also benefitted local people, and has become a driving force for the development of neighboring towns.

In neighboring Rongjiang County, the local government integrated industries related to intangible cultural heritage, to better develop the regional economy through forming a cultural industry chain of indigo dyeing.

As the "Hometown of China's indigo dyeing culture", Rongjiang has been planting isatis root since ancient times, and local ethnic people use it to make traditional Chinese medicine and dye clothes.

Luo Yun, head of the local company's cultural and creative section, said, "For 'Village Super League', we have developed nearly 40 kinds of cultural and creative products, and there are many people come to us for further cooperation."

"At present, the online orders of intangible cultural and creative products have surpassed our production capacity, and we also have abundant new offline orders. During the 'Village Super League' period, our sales of cultural and creative products surpassed 450,000 yuan (61,500 U.S. dollars)," Luo added.

"The process to mechanise indigo dyeing techniques has both local cultural attributes and market potentials, which can be extended into a mature industry chain, and its market prospect is broad," said by Yu Hao, chairman of Guizhou Indigo Agricultural Investment.

"Thanks to new media and network communication, the global influence of the 'Village Super League' event has been expanded, and live e-commerce has also provided more possibilities for Guizhou intangible cultural heritage promotion and product sales," Yu added.

(Web editor: Tian Yi, Liang Jun)


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