The annual “Sail Boat Race” event at Elak-Elak Beach, Sekotong, West Lombok, has been captivating the hearts of both local fishermen and participants from across West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) and even the picturesque Island of the Gods, Bali. More than just a celebration of Indonesia’s 78th independence anniversary (HUT RI), this event, which was orchestrated by dedicated tourism stakeholders and local fishermen, serves as a profound endeavor to introduce this hidden gem of a tourist destination to a wider audience.
The Hope for Inclusion
Abubakar Abdullah, the Chairman of Commission II of the West Lombok Regional People’s Representative Council (DPRD), envisions a future where the Sail Boat Race finds its well-deserved place in the official calendar of events maintained by the West Lombok Regency Government (Pemda Lobar). This inclusion, he believes, would pave the way for budget allocation through the Regional Budget (APBD), thus ensuring its long-term viability and extending its reach to an even broader audience.
A Voluntary Tradition
For three consecutive years, local tourism stakeholders and fishermen have come together to organize this event voluntarily. Through their collective efforts, the event not only showcases the area’s unique and authentic attractions but also celebrates the region’s distinct cultural identity.
Visitors from outside the region, especially foreign tourists, are increasingly seeking unique and immersive experiences. They yearn to understand the traditional ways of life, such as how local fishermen venture out to sea using age-old methods to sustain their livelihoods.
“This is what they want to know, what it’s like for us to sail out to sea in a traditional way, and this is what we introduce to guests, especially foreign tourists,” expressed the council member representing the Sekotong-Lembar constituency.
Preserving Maritime Traditions
The Sekotong area boasts a distinctive maritime tradition that deserves global recognition. By promoting this tradition, more people can become aware of its existence, and it can evolve into a compelling attraction for tourists. The sensation of sailing on traditional boats, without the aid of machinery, while awaiting the enchanting sunset is the crowning glory of this event.
Participants and guests alike were seen reveling in the event’s offerings. The interest from visitors, both local and from afar, was extraordinary. This surge of interest had a ripple effect on local businesses, benefiting traders and parking attendants alike.
Notably, participants weren’t limited to the local community; individuals from distant locales, like Nusa Penida in Bali, also joined in. Witnessing the remarkable impact of this event, which breathes new life into tourism and bolsters the local economy, Abubakar Abdullah passionately advocated for the expansion of traditional events involving the community and captivating traditions throughout West Lombok in the future.
In conclusion, the Sail Boat Race in Sekotong, West Lombok, stands as a beacon of tradition, culture, and community. Its inclusion in the local government’s event calendar, with the assurance of annual funding through the Regional Budget (APBD), could herald a new era for tourism in this region. As visitors seek authentic experiences and cultural immersion, this event’s potential to attract a global audience is undeniable.
Article Source: Inside Lombok – Tarik Minat Wisatawan, “Sail Boat Race” di Sekotong Diharapkan Masuk Calender of Event