BUTTERWORTH: Despite the rain, some 1,000 visitors took part in a mass yee sang tossing ritual, which saw multiple tables being joined up to form a 209.7m-long line at the Tow Boo Kong Temple here.
The ceremony on Saturday, which was organised by the temple and supported by the state government, saw the visitors coming in droves with umbrellas into the temple compound as early as 6.30pm.
Among them was Kenny Han, 50, who came all the way from Kuala Lumpur with his family to witness the event.
“It is a little frustrating that the weather is not on our side but despite the rain, we still feel a bit of excitement,” he said.
Temple member Saw Bee Ling, 47, said although it was raining, the event was a success and something to remember in the future.
“It was an amazing night,” he said.
“Thousands more would have attended had it not rained.”
The visitors were also entertained by a traditional dance performance by Tow Boo Kong Temple group, songs and dance performances by invited artists.
The event was graced by Penang Governor Tun Ahmad Fuzi Abdul Razak, who arrived at the temple at about 8.30pm and was greeted by former chief minister and Bagan MP Lim Guan Eng, Consul-General of China in Penang Zhou Youbin, state environment and welfare committee chairman Phee Boon Poh, state youth and sports committee chairman Soon Lip Chee and former Seberang Prai City Council mayor Datuk Seri Rozali Mohamud.
Also present to greet the arrival of Ahmad Fuzi were Tow Boo Kong Temple chairman Datuk Khor Wan Tat, event organising chairman Datuk Ang Lim Kean and the board of trustees of the temple.
In his welcoming speech, Ang said the tossing of yee sang at the temple was the longest and biggest in the northern region.
The event is an annual ceremony since 2012, but was postponed for two years in 2021 and 2022 due to the pandemic,” he said.
Lim, in his speech, said Ahmad Fuzi was the first Penang Governor to attend the event at the temple.
The yee sang spread was prepared by the temple’s working committee at about 7pm, but due to the rain, three separate tables were set up for the tossing of yee sang for the honorary guests just in case of heavy rain.
The original planned yee sang tossing, however, materialised at about 9.40pm when the rain subsided.
The consumption of yee sang is especially popular during Chinese New Year in Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore.
Versions of the Teochew-style raw fish salad exist in China but the contemporary version was created and popularised in the 1960s by the Chinese community in South-East Asia.