On April 28-29, 2018, the Spring in Boysun Festival was held in the village of Boysun, in southern Uzbekistan. The first Spring in Boysun Festival was held in 2002, and then in the several years afterwards, but was later stopped to make room for other large events. Only in 2017 was the festival revived, in order to introduce locals and guests to the unique culture of this southern region.
On the morning of the first day, even from the center of Boysun itself, it was possible to see hot air balloons flying over the hills around the village, which created a festive atmosphere throughout the region. For the several hundred guests that came to the Spring in Boysun Festival, there was a large parking lot located at the base of the steep Boysuntau Mountains. A real yurt camp was built on the broad meadows to represent the semi-nomadic lifestyle of the local residents.
The name and logo of the festival were drawn on the side of a green slope with white stones, with each letter about 7-8 meters tall. Hot air balloons were flying in the sky, even though the festivities were just starting. Folklore ensembles from Boysun and from other regions of Uzbekistan began their performances, and artisans and master craftsmen were showing off their work around the festival.
Special attention was given to circus performers, including tightrope walkers and Uzbek weightlifters. Here there were extreme acts of balance, endurance, and strength. One performer showed how to drive a large nail into a board using just his bare hands, another used his teeth to lift dumbbells (and even a person), and a third laid face-down on a bed of glass and stood back up without a single cut. Though these acts could be frightening at times, more often than not, they drew admiration from the crowd.
The other part of the Spring in Boysun Festival was set aside for traditional sports. The largest space was dedicated to kurash, which is traditional Uzbek wrestling. There was a small competition between wrestlers and representatives of the different regions of Uzbekistan. Not far away were arenas for sheep and cockfights. As a result, the male half of the guests were quite happy.
For the female half, there was no less of an interesting festival program. Women both young and old walked through the festival in bright traditional clothing, dresses, and jewelry. There was a large market, where dresses, hats, jewelry, and other accessories, all made in a traditional Uzbek style, were available to buy.
Of course, the most important parts of the Spring in Boysun Festival were the various folklore performances from groups representing all of the regions of Uzbekistan. Dances and songs could be heard in every corner, and they were so lively that a number of guests couldn’t help themselves and started dancing along.
The Spring in Boysun Festival ended with bright fireworks, but in another year, you’ll once again be able to walk through the foothills around Boysun, through the beautiful yurts and among the dancers and artisans, who will show you the beauty of this unique region in the south of Uzbekistan.