DESPITE rain brought by depression over the Deltaic areas these days, the annual festival of the floating of the lamps on the Shwegyin River in eastern Bago Region on Thursday was a complete success.
The 167th traditional light festival occurs one day after the Full Moon of Thadingyut in October marking the end of the Buddhist Rains Retreat and usually takes place during the nine-day long festival.
Thousands of local residents and visitors from afar gathered at the final day of the festival lining the bank of the river to enjoy boat rowing contests and spectacles such as dance performances by troupes on boats. The entertainment is known as the “festival on water”.
Meanwhile, shops and a traditional theatre are set up in town to complete the festival; this half is known as “the festival on land”.
People started to float lamps on the Shwegyin River when the sun sets and a decorated barge, themed in the image of Ashin Uppa Gutta tours along the river for public observance.
Locals believed that the festival began in the Konboung era and have preserved the annual traditional festival, which turns 187th this year.
Yan Aung Tun (Painzalok)