This August we welcomed members from the International Association of Scientific Experts in Tourism, who visited the Pear Orchard Temple. The group had just attended a conference in Lijiang and were eager to see the new developments in Shaxi, especially to understand how the Pear Orchard’s role in sustainable travel promotion would affect local tourism. They were taken on a tour of the temple by Old Theatre Inn Partner and local tourism official, Mr. Wu Yunxin, who explained the temple’s unique history and the methodology for restoration.
That day, the group had lunch on the temple’s upper terrace, where they were treated to a performance by the local village’s Bai women’s dance troupe and had a chance to learn the dance themselves. That same day, a ceremony was being held by local religious leaders to prayed before the image of Guan Yin in the main hall (See video below). Local women and children received the visitors with a prayer for their safe travels.
Temple caretaker Chris Barclay also spoke this month to a standing room only house at the Courtyard Institute in Beijing, on the process of restoring the temple while balancing sacred and secular interests of the community. The talk was sponsored by China Building Restoration. Chris will also speak in Tibet in September at the Khampa Region Heritage Development Forum.