COMMUNITY HAPPENINGS

Events

The annual Bor Sang Umbrella Festival at Ban Bor Sang Village in San Kamphaeng continues until Sunday, January 19, organized by the Tourism Authority of Thailand Northern Office Region 1 in cooperation with Chiang Mai Provincial Office, San Kamphaeng District, Tambon Ton Pao Administrative Office, and private sectors. This festival is held to preserve the Bor Sang Umbrellas and Lanna arts and culture as part of the cultural heritage of Chiang Mai and to promote the folk handicrafts. This 20th festival provides many unique activities to display the Lanna culture; the old style of the Northern Thailand. These activities include a parade, local displays and instrumental show, Bor Sang umbrellas and fans competition, the Miss Umbrella Beauty Contest (known as “women riding the bicycle and holding the umbrellas”) and sales of local handicrafts. For additional information: contact Tambon Ton Pao Administrative Office: 053 338 048-9 or the Tourism Authority of Thailand Northern Office Region 1: 0-5324-8604.

The 2nd Lamphun Walking Street, Wine and Sai Ua (northern sausage) Festival continues through Sunday, January 19, promoted by U Mong Municipality. The main focus will be to show the diversity of agricultural products available in the region, with the Tambon U Mong Culture Center in Lamphun being the exhibition arena. Longan and fruit wine from Tambon U Mong, Thai whisky and sai ua will be the main products featured at the festival. During the festival, U Mong locals will dress in Lanna style while the main activities are wine and sai ua sales, One Village - One Product stalls, stage performances, wine production demonstrations, wine and sai ua consumption competitions, Lanna Walking Street done in the style corresponding to 50-60 years ago, and local instrumental shows.

The Maejo Fair 2003 to showcase local developments will be held January 23 – 26 at Wingspan Pitch fairgrounds on the Maejo University campus, Sansai District, Chiang Mai. Government departments, foundations, royal projects, private clubs and associations will exhibit their wares. The fair’s objectives include showcasing the works of royal agricultural projects, highlighting development in science and technology in agriculture and the environment, and to preserve local culture and give academic advice to farmers. Exhibitions, seminars, competitions, dealing with plants, animals and pets, agricultural products, demonstrations, entertainment, traveling, sports, and retail shops.

Services

Looking for a wheelchair? Hopefully not! But many poor disabled children in Chiangmai are. So why not donate one for only 7000 baht? Visit the Freedom Wheelchair Workshop across from the Chiangmai Disabled Center, 133/1 Rajapakinai Road, Chiangmai (near Thapae Gate).

Laundry and Internet service, traditional Thai massage, Thai language courses. You find it all at the Chiangmai Disabled Center, 133/1 Rajapakinai Road, Chiangmai (near Thapae Gate).

For the kids

A Toys Library has been opened for Chiang Mai children at the Northern Child Development Center behind the Nakhon Ping Hospital. It is supported by the Japanese Government and the Japan Small Scale-Grant Assistance (SSGA). This library is designed to encourage childhood development and be a learning source which can provide equipment to support that aim. Activities at the Toys Library include lending and return service, instruction and demonstration of equipment and skill testing. The Toys Library also helps parents by selling the products made by those participating in the center’s vocational project to increase local families’ incomes. The Toys Library now has 63 members. Anyone can become a subscriber by paying a 100 baht annual fee. The equipment provided includes local natural product toys made from clay, bamboo, and coconut shell as well as plastic and metal toys. The library is open daily from 9 a.m. - 4.30 p.m. except weekends. Interested people who want to subscribe for this training or become a member can contact 0-5389-0238-44 ext. 3210. The Northern Child Development Center Chiang Mai is located at 196 Moo 4 Tambon Donkaew, Mae Rim district.

Promotions

Chiang Mai Hill Hotel congratulates all the new graduates of every educational institute and offers them a special promotion. Ms Watcharaporn Chongpaophan, director of the sales and promotion department of the Chiang Mai Hill Hotel said this special sales promotion, titled, “Congratulations and Party Promotion” will be offered to new graduates for this occasion. Special banquet size rooms could be made available for some 50 - 400 graduates from the same class to celebrate and be served a buffet at 199 baht per head, including soft drinks and other complimentary gifts. The rooms will provide a nice atmosphere and be colorfully decorated. New graduates are also invited to stretch their vocal chords at the Puang Saed coffee shop with its karaoke. For more information contact sales and public relations at the hotel (053) 400 605.

February

The 3rd EXPOMAP will be held February 3-7 at the Lotus Pang Suan Kaew Hotel, organized by the International Council for Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (ICMAP) in cooperation with Chiang Mai University. Medicinal and aromatic plants experts from all over the world gather for a conference, academic meeting and exhibition. Exhibitions of medicinal and aromatic plants, many coming from shops in Chiang Mai. In addition, cosmetics, supplement foods, and useful plants will be shown at the fair. The Faculty of Science, Chiang Mai University revealed that this fair has been well promoted all over the world, stirring up interest from nearby countries and people from Bangkok. The Medicinal Herbs Tour from Bangkok will be coming straight to our Chiang Mai fair.

Chiang Mai will hold its 27th Flower Festival February 7-9. Flower float parade, flower displays, Miss Bupphachart (Miss Floral Beauty) contest, and many other interesting activities, including 9 activities at the Naowarat Bridge, flower exhibitions at Suan Buak Had, Kad Mua at the provincial governor’s residence, Miss International Bupphachart Contest, flower picture contest, international food fair, music concert, and entries from the One Village - One Product campaign. The flower parade, the highlight of the festival, will be start at the Naowarat Bridge 8 a.m. on February 8 and then move to Suan Buak Had Public Park. The flower floats will be parked at Suan Buak Had to let tourists get close to these decorated vehicles.

Mass Lanna Wedding Ceremony, Valentine’s Day - Khum Khantoke, through Watchara Tantranon, has announced plans to marry 50 willing couples in their “Lanna Valentine’s Wedding” to promote Lanna wedding dress styles and to introduce the Lanna style wedding ceremony. Khum Khantoke will provide a free wedding celebration for one couple from each district. The bridal couples can invite 10 guests and pay only 300 baht each for additional guests. The other 30 brides and grooms can join the ceremony by paying 30,000 baht for 50 guests or 50,000 baht for 100 guests. All the couples will be provided with the costumes and all the paraphernalia necessary. Brides and grooms’ customary wedding parade will start from in front of Carrefour Department Store at 7 a.m., led by two elephants, and followed by 48 tricycles, leading to the Singha grounds where the guests will be waiting. The ceremony will proceed according to the Lanna ritual until late at night.