Manisa revives with traditional festival
MANİSA - Anatolia News Agency
During the opening ceremony, the traditional mesir paste, a sweet containing around 40 different spices, was prepared and distributed to people. AA photoThe 473rd International Mesir Paste Festival was opened yesterday in the western town of Manisa with the mixing of the paste at a ceremony held in the town’s Cumhuriyet Square.
Speaking at the ceremony, Manisa Mayor Halil İbrahim Daşöz said that the festival had been a tradition in the Aegean province for centuries. He said that the festival was included in UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage List, adding, “We believe that it will contribute the international recognition of the city and of mesir paste, which is a taste unique to the city.”
During the ceremony, the traditional mesir paste, a sweet containing around 40 different spices, was prepared and distributed to people.
The festival will end on March 24, when the sweets will be thrown down from the domes of the historic Sultan Mosque.
The festival commemorates the recovery of the mother of Süleyman the Magnificent from a mysterious disease cured by the paste. Every March, the paste is prepared, wrapped, blessed and then scattered from the domes of the Sultan Mosque. Thousands of people come from different regions of Turkey to compete to catch the sweets. Many believe that by so doing their wishes for marriage, work and children will come true within the year, according to the UNESCO website.