Pattaya, Bang Saen, Khon Kaen scrap Songkran parties

Pattaya, Bang Saen, Khon Kaen scrap Songkran parties

People enjoy water splashing during the Songkran festival on Silom Road in Bangkok last year. Will they be back this year? (Photo by Pornprom Satrabhaya)
People enjoy water splashing during the Songkran festival on Silom Road in Bangkok last year. Will they be back this year? (Photo by Pornprom Satrabhaya)

There will be no water splashing during Songkran — at least in Khon Kaen, Pattaya and Bang Saen — as the coronavirus outbreak has forced organisers to cancel parties.

Khon Kaen on Thursday announced the cancellation of the Khon Kaen Songkran Festival, leaving only religious ceremonies to be held during the traditional Thai New Year period this year, as organisers were concerned about the virus.

Thais and foreigners usually descend on Khon Kaen municipality every April to splash water and watch a parade in a no-alcohol celebration.

But the Mayor said Khon Kaen would have only religious activities such as offering alms to monks and blessing the elderly with water.

Koh Phangan in Surat Thani has suspended its full-moon party for the same reason. The beach party will return only when things get back to normal, organisers on the southern island say.

Pattaya City, meanwhile, has cancelled the traditional Songkran festival scheduled for April 18-19. The festival that brings people into the streets for water splashing, as well as religious ceremonies, is normally held after the Songkran holidays in the rest of the country.

All entertainment activities during the festival will be cancelled, the city said.

“We are seeking cooperation from local residents and tourists to refrain from splashing water as it could cause the spread of the virus,” Pattaya Mayor Sonthaya Khunpluem said in a message on his Facebook account on Friday.

The resort city has already postponed the Pattaya Music Festival planned for March 20-21 to a future date that has not been set. The festival was one of eight activities that have been called off or delayed this month.

Another famous event is in Bang Saen but the Saen Suk Municipality said on Friday that events planned for April 16-17 would not take place due to worries about the virus.

Songkran activities in Bangkok, including the Khao San water-splashing days, now appear increasingly uncertain. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and Tourism Authority of Thailand will soon make a decision on whether they should go ahead.

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Vocabulary

  • cancellation: a decision to stop something that has been arranged from taking place - การยกเลิก
  • ceremony (noun): a formal public event - งานพิธี
  • parade: to walk somewhere in a formal group of people, in order to celebrate or protest about something - เดินขบวน, เดินพาเหรด
  • schedule: a list showing the times at which particular events will happen - ตารางเวลา
  • scrapped: decided not to continue with something, such as a plan or event - ยุติแผนที่วางไว้
  • splash: to hit something noisily with a liquid - กระเด็นเปื้อน, สาดกระเด็น
  • suspend: to stop for a period of time - ยกเลิกชั่วคราว, ระงับชั่วคราว
  • uncertain: not feeling sure about what to do, whether something is true etc - ไม่แน่ใจ, คลางแคลงใจ

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