Nong C becomes Young Tourism Ambassador
Mayor Wutisak Rermkitkarn (standing center) and the sponsors from
Pattaya Mail, represemted by Pratheep and Tony Malhotra, and the Jesters
Care for Kids Committee Mike Franklin, Lewis ‘Woody’ Underwood and
Pattaya City has chosen its Young Tourism Ambassador,
following a competition that lasted almost one month.
The training project, which involved a total of 110
students and was being held for the second year in succession, started
on March 13 and received cooperation from many government and private
‘C’ Bunsawat, this year’s Young PR ambassador.
Those taking part were aged from nine to 16 years,
and were required to have a good command of basic English language
The first round started with the full quota of 110
students to test their level of knowledge, and out of this number 50
were selected to go forward to the next round. This involved a test on
their knowledge of the government administrative system in Pattaya, and
the history, tourism locations, and current and future events in the
These 50 youngsters also underwent training, and were
taught aspects of the city such as the role of the Air and Coastal
Defense Command. They were taken around the city and its environs,
learning about the various attractions, the ecosystem of the East coast,
and specifically the breeding and protection of sea turtles.
Thappajug presents this year’s Young PR ambassador, Arisara ‘C’
Bunsawat, with her winning trophy and sash.
From this stage, 20 contestants were selected for the
final test on April 5, held at Central Festival Center.
There was naturally great excitement during this
final round, which was conducted by Mayor Niran Wattanasartsathorn with
Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh and former Chonburi MP Chanyuth Hengtrakul
Malhotra presents the prizes to the runner-up, Thippawan
The 20 candidates showed their abilities on stage,
cheered on by a large crowd of parents, friends and well-wishers.
The outright winner was Nong C, Miss Arisara
Boonsawat, a 12-year-old student from Sathidudomsueksa School. She has
been named Young Tourism Ambassador, and won a certificate, a trophy,
and a 12,000 baht scholarship. Sathidudomsueksa School was also
presented with a trophy from the Jester’s MC and Pattaya Mail
Publishing Co Ltd so that all the students could share in Nong C’s
Tantijamnong, general manager of Central Festival Center Pattaya
presents the 2nd
runners up trophy to Pongpat Prommi.
First runner-up was Miss Thippawan Busabongpaitoon
from Pattaya School No 8, who received a certificate along with a trophy
and a 9,000 baht scholarship. In third place was Master Pongpat Prommi
from Pattaya Arunothai School, who received a certificate, trophy and a
7,000 baht scholarship.
The Morning Star Young Ambassador was Miss Arunrat
Jantee from Pattaya School No 8, who received a 3,000 baht scholarship.
Good Relations Young Ambassador was Miss Patcharaporn Yooyuen from
Pattaya School No 9, who received a 3,000 baht scholarship.
Nong C said that she had at first not expected to
win, but gained in confidence as the competition progressed.
"I am so grateful to win this award, and I must
say thank you to the supporters, including teachers, parents, and the
organizers’ group who presented such a good opportunity for all of us
taking part," she said. "I will do my very best to perform all
duties and assignments I am given."
tants should not think about winning or losing, but
they should think about being good at dealing with people.
Pratheep Malhotra, managing director of Pattaya Mail Publishing Co
Ltd and one of the committee group members who selected the final
contestants, said the project was an excellent concept and he
congratulated the organizer group. This encourages all young students to
know how to use the Thai and English languages to promote their home
city to visitors, he said, and that he would personally be very pleased
to work in cooperation with city hall and the private sector to continue
supporting good projects such as this in the future.
performance by the Tiffany’s Show.
Mangmum’s entertaining show on the final day kept the audience riveted
to their seats.
photo L to R) Apichart Puetpan, Wutisak Rermkitkarn, and Suwanthep
Malhotra; (and right photo) Chaiwat Charoensuk (right) and Pratheep
right), present theme shirts and stationery to the students.
Bundityanond, MD of Rabbit Resort, Sopin Thappajug, MD of Diana Group,
Alisa Phantusak asst. MD of Tiffany’s Show Pattaya and Suwanthep
Malhotra, Pattaya Mail director provide interesting talks on different
teamwork and unity was the theme on the 3rd
having fun with the sea turtles.
was a great moment for for the participants and the judges.
all the performers’ talent, from traditional Thai dances, contemporary
modern dance, singing or even playing musical instruments, it was a
tough decision for the judges.
‘My great opportunity to help
the talented kids shine’
An interview with Rungratree Thongsai, organizer of
Pattaya’s Young Tourism Ambassador competition
Rungratree Thongsai, organizer of Pattaya’s Young
Tourism Ambassador competition, says that the roots of the idea go back to
her own early years at primary school, when there were no events organized
at which the local children could display their talents.
"There was no stage for young kids living in our
rural area to perform," says Rungratree. "I always dreamed that
if I had the chance I would help make their dreams come true.
"Organizing the Young Tourism Ambassador
competition really did make me feel that I could do something for children
with talent and ambition. To see them achieve something, to see them proud
of their achievements, and to see Pattaya City proud of them, was a
fulfilling experience that I always dreamed of."
Rungratree says she is sure that far too many
youngsters are directionless, feeling they have something to offer but
without the knowledge or the means to find their own way. Consequently,
many youngsters waste a good deal of their time, spending their leisure
hours and school holidays in non-productive activities.
"Instead of logging onto a useless website or
playing video games during their free time, each one has the opportunity
to learn about Pattaya City. They just need to open books and look around
them to learn more about their hometown, and that is a start," she
says. "The Young Ambassador project shows young people that Pattaya
is actually a place of wonderful opportunity."
During last year’s Young Tourism Ambassador
competition, two representatives were sent from 25 schools. This year,
however, the contest was opened to all students, and altogether 211
students applied, of whom 52 passed the first round. The second round was
a lot tougher but it was also highly educational, with informative
addresses, workshops and lectures by the experts in different fields.
"It was not easy for these kids to pass through
these stages, as the persons who pass though the tests and enter the final
round must be able to communicate and work with adults both in the public
and private sectors," says Rungratree.
She says that during the photo taking at the end of the
contest, she deliberately kept out of the limelight. "It was the
children’s moment," she says. "They did it all, and the
winners were up there on the stage with the applause of the organizers and
the guests of honor. I just sat watching all the smiles and the happiness,
and that was my big moment too."
Rungratree adds her thanks to all those who helped make
her dream come true. "I would like to thank all the support given to
me especially by the sponsors, Pattaya City Hall, Jesters Care for Kids
Committee, Pattaya Mail, YWCA Pattaya, Hard Rock Hotel, Skål
International Pattaya and the East, and last but not the least my lovely
brother Mr Dave who created a beautiful stage for the night."
Young Pattaya PR Ambassador finals did not disappoint
Representing the Jesters on the Judging panel,
alongside Jester Pete, to find the 2007 Young Pattaya PR Ambassador was
indeed a memorable and enjoyable experience. The Jesters ‘Care for
Kids’ Charity Drive, now in its 10th year,
co-sponsored with city hall and Pattaya Mail for the second year
of the contest and will no doubt continue to do so in the future.
Mungmeephol demonstrates windsurfing, complete with board and sail,
suitably attired and with no make-up.
Fifty-two students from Pattaya schools took the
individual initiative to enter, signifying the interest in the event and
their ambition to represent Pattaya City as its Young PR Ambassador. The
evening of the finals on the outdoor stage at Central Festival on
Thursday 5th April did not disappoint. Twenty
finalists each gave a four minute presentation comprising a two minute
performance followed by a two minute subject report about an aspect of
life in and around Pattaya City. The judges were required to score on
criteria that included confidence, beauty, performance, intelligence and
Perhaps the hardest entrant to score was the first on
stage, requiring careful thought as that then set the benchmark for
scoring levels thereafter. Most of the students gave performances
depicting Thai culture, predominantly by way of Thai dance with
traditional and authentic dress, make-up of the highest standard and all
quite beautiful to watch. Clearly much thought and effort had gone into
the detail of their programs. However, Panipa Mungmeephol from Srisuvit
School chose an entirely opposite direction and demonstrated windsurfing
on stage, complete with board and sail, suitably attired and with no
make-up. Here was a natural beauty striking at the heart of Pattaya as a
seaside fun resort with outdoor sports. Credit due here for taking the
All performances and subject presentations were to a
high standard, and some quite outstanding, producing from the judging
panel’s scoring results the ten student finalists. Each came back on
stage and was given a random pick topic to talk about, with 10% of the
judge’s score being awarded for part of the presentation being in
English. First on stage was the wind surfer who performed well, but was
lost for words when it came to speaking English, and the next eight
finalists also failed in the English speaking category. However, the
final competitor, a girl, Arisara Boonsawat, a 12-year-old student from
Sathidudomsueksa School ended her presentation with some well spoken
English that added to her overall score, and enough to be declared the
winner and the Young Pattaya PR Ambassador for 2007.
This is a fine contest in its concept and execution, and at Central
Festival it was superbly staged on the night.
PCEC celebrates traditional Songkran
The Pattaya City Expats Club (PCEC) meeting on
Sunday, April 15th at Henry J. Bean’s fell in the middle of this year’s
Songkran celebrations. Subsequently it was decided to introduce some of
the traditional aspects of this often misunderstood Thai festival.
ceremonial bathing of the Buddha image was carried out in the entrance
at this Sunday’s meeting.
Songkran provides the opportunity to make merit by
offering food to the monks. It is also achieved by way of the bathing
ceremony of the Buddha image, which was carried out in the entrance at
this Sunday’s meeting.
Elderly relatives are visited over the Songkran
period in order to pay respect and ask for their blessing by pouring
fragrant water over their hands. The most senior club members, Richard
Smith and Bill Burbridge were pleased to take part in this aspect of
traditional Songkran ceremony. They were seated in front of the large
group of members and guests at a decorated table who then lined up to
pour water over their hands, over flower bouquets, and gave blessings
which were returned.
guests gather for a commemorative photo.
The PCEC was most appreciative of the efforts of
Sermsakdi for organising this and enabling club members to participate
Richard Smith was then presented with a King’s 60th
year Commemorative shirt, specially made for the Banglamung District. He
also received a pin from Banglamung chief culture officer, Pranom.
Smith and Bill Burbridge were seated in front of the large group of
members and guests at a decorated table who then lined up to pour water
over their hands, over flower bouquets, and gave blessings which were
The PCEC was then honoured to welcome back the nai
amphur, chief of the Banglamung District, Prathip Chongsubthum. He was
accompanied by the Banglamung culture officer, Pranom and Chaiwat, head
of TAT Region 3.
The nai amphur addressed the PCEC asking that help
was required from the foreign community to ensure a safe and secure
living environment for both visitors and residents. This was a very
important speech as it was the first detailed explanation of the
governor’s plan to provide greater security for foreign residents in
Pattaya and surrounding areas.
It is proposed that ubons (housing developments) are
formed into village like units, with an informal chief, and if large
enough, sub-chiefs, who would get to know the people in their ubons or
their sub district, and learn what they could about the security in the
area, possibly keeping an informal eye out for those that might need
help, providing information when asked, and noting any problems.
Paul Back, a resident of Pattaya for more than 40
years, spoke up immediately at the end of the nai amphur’s talk, and
stated that he thought it was a great idea, long over due, and strongly
supported it. The PCEC as a whole strongly support the governor’s
Returning to normal club activities, chairman Andre
Machielsen regretted that the visit to the Naruebet helicopter carrier
at Sattahip naval base scheduled for Wednesday 11th April had had to be
postponed. This had been due to an emergency at the base. However, the
visit had been rearranged for Monday 30th April.
Andre went on to remind the attendees of the
forthcoming club trip to Koh Chang which provided an opportunity to
escape from the non traditional approach to Songkran! Another trip,
sponsored by TAT was then announced, this time to Hua Hin when Stewart
Saunders will be delivering a supply of dental floss to the children who
attend the King’s School located there. The trip is expected to take
place during late May.
In keeping with club’s policy to invite the
attendees to participate in announcements, Jim Jones provided the
upcoming events and Terry Garr described the activities of the Special
The regular Open Forum, mediated by Chairman Andre, was then underway
and this proved to be the usual lively and entertaining session. For
more information regarding, not only the PCEC Sunday meetings but also
the varied mid week activities provided by the Special Interest Groups,
please see the Community Happenings section of Pattaya Mail or,
for more details, visit the club’s website at
Darul Ibadah Mosque holds fund-raiser
for restoration project
Darul Ibadah Mosque held a fair on April 7, with
certificates presented to supporters and more than 50 booths selling
food and handicraft products to raise funds that will go towards
renovating and extending the building.
Minister of Tourism and Sports Sonthaya Khunplome (left) presents a
thank you memento to Mayor Niran Wattanasartsathorn, a supporter of the
Former Minister of Tourism and Sport Sonthaya
Khunplome presided over the certificate presentation, with Mayor Niran
Wattanasartsathorn and councilor Banlue Kullavanijaya amongst those
receiving the awards.
Farooq Wongborisuthi, chairman of the organizing
committee, said that this community is an old one, dating back to 1943,
and was the first Moslem community in Pattaya. A small mosque was
constructed at that time for religious practices. Later, people began to
set up other communities, including Nernplabwan in South Pattaya and Ton
Krabok, and each community built its sown mosque.
visit the more than 50 booths selling food and handicraft products set
up to raise funds to go towards renovating and extending the building.
These days the Darul Ibadah Mosque represents a large
community, the current mosque having replaced the original in 1965.
In 1978, the government amalgamated this area with
Pattaya City, and with the increasing number of tourists so too has
there been an increasing number of Moslems to pray at the Darul Ibadah
However, said Farooq, the condition of the mosque is deteriorating,
the roof leaks when it rains and the walls are cracked. The mosque
committee plans to restore the building and add a two-story extension,
which he said would greatly improve the appearance of the structure.
Muslims and friends attended the fair and thank you ceremonies.