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Illuminated Lanterns and Banana Leaf Boats

Thai Candle Festival 2008

— November 25, 2008 — Social Good
Thousands of candle-filled banana leaf-boats (krathongs), decorated by Thai people, were tied together and set afloat on the waterways during the annual Sukhothai Loi Krathong and Candle Festival held in Thailand, which marked the beginning of their three day celebration of light.

It’s believed that this grandiose festival began back in the late 1800’s by Buddhists. Throughout the years, however, due to the festivities taking place along the water, honored is Mae Khongkha, the Mother of Waters, although there are Buddhist readings during the celebration as well.

The Sukhothai Loi Krathong and Candle Festival takes place during the full moon. On the first evening, a mesmerizing occurrence happens as tens of thousands of candles become air bound in lanterns, illuminating the sky and making it appear as though a plethora of stars are falling.

Many in the Thai culture clip their nails and add personal belongings to their floats because they believe that all grudges, sorrows, and pain will be cast away and that they will have good fortune the following year—I hope that all of their aspirations become reality.
Trend Themes
1. Candle Festivals - Expanding the Chinese Lantern Festival and Thailand's Sukhothai Loi Krathong and Candle Festival across cultures and regions to promote social gatherings and community activism.
2. Boat Decorations - Encouraging decorative, fairly-traded and eco-friendly boats for various events to help sustain artisans with livelihood and promote quality craftsmanship.
3. Sky Lanterns - Green technology innovations which turn sky lanterns into personalized drone experiences like signal drones during emergencies or crowd control drones for festivals.
Industry Implications
1. Arts and Crafts - Supporting indigenous trades to innovate resources for creating intricate theme-based decorations that help rejuvenate traditional festivals across the world.
2. Tourism - Promoting collaborative efforts and knowledge sharing between festivals in different countries to generate greater tourism revenue and cultural exchange.
3. Aerospace - Developing scalable solutions to repurpose traditional practices like sky lanterns and make them fitting for contemporary safety and waste-reduction requirements.
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