KUCHING: Around 500 attendees celebrated Gawai Raya at the Sarawak State Library (Pustaka) here yesterday.
The symbolic Palak Meja was performed by Pustaka head Executive officer Dr Rashidah Bolhassan.
The tradition has been practised for more than century in certain places and villages in Sarawak. It is usually celebrated on the 7th day of Syawal where a specific cake that has not been "touched" is placed on the table as a decoration which is then called palak meja and it will be sliced by the host with the family members and guests.
Kek Hati Parek is usually used as palak meja as it is a classic cake and can be called as the "Queen of Cakes" in Sarawak.
However, in the modern days, certain villages or places organise the Mecah Palak Meja or Melanggar Meja as a purpose built friendly event to foster closer ties among villagers and to foster a stronger sense of solidarity and unity between the host and guests.
Such in the unique tradition and culture found in Sarawak where the ultimate agenda is to strengthen relationships and unity to create a harmonious and peaceful community.