Rain cannot dampen spirits at HM the Queen’s birthday celebrations

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Heavy rains may have eventually cancelled the parade, but it couldn’t stop thousands of adoring subjects from wishing Her Majesty Queen Sirikit a happy 80th birthday last Sunday at Bali Hai pier.

Rain can’t dampen spirits on HM the Queen’s birthday

Mother Nature rained on their parade, but Pattaya residents still found ways to wish HM the Queen a happy birthday on national Mother’s Day.

Even as bands, school kids and volunteers assembled on Beach Road, the skies ripped open and poured for nearly two hours, forcing cancellation of the parade. Merrymakers made due inside Royal Garden Plaza, where marching bands played for marchers carrying signs and flowers.

Heavy rains may have eventually cancelled the parade, but it couldn’t stop thousands of adoring subjects from wishing Her Majesty Queen Sirikit a happy 80th birthday last Sunday at Bali Hai pier. Heavy rains may have eventually cancelled the parade, but it couldn’t stop thousands of adoring subjects from wishing Her Majesty Queen Sirikit a happy 80th birthday last Sunday at Bali Hai pier.

The day started sunny enough when Banglamung District Chief Chawalit Sang-Uthai led bureaucrats and merchants in a 6:30 a.m. merit-making ceremony. They gave dried food and rice to 80 monks then laid the traditional Buddhist tray of flowers, candles and incense in front her painting, signing their names to a blessings card to offer their best well wishes and prayers to the queen.

Once skies began to clear, events repeated themselves at 7 p.m. in Pattaya, with Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome leading thousands of city workers and residents in a similar flower tray and prayer ceremony. The event was capped with a festive fireworks display.

Residents offer lunch to more than 50 monks at Jittapawan Temple.Residents offer lunch to more than 50 monks at Jittapawan Temple.

At the Sheraton Pattaya Resort, General Manager Michael Delargy led the flower offering in front of an image of HM the Queen while General Manager Saran Tantichamnan did the same at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.

A day before the birthday celebration, on August 11 at Jittapawan Temple, Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome presided over a ceremony to give a stay of execution to local livestock in the honor of HM the Queen’s dedication to environmental conservation.

Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome sprinkles flowers over the heads of cows whose lives have been spared in honor of HM the Queen’s dedication to environmental conservation.Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome sprinkles flowers over the heads of cows whose lives have been spared in honor of HM the Queen’s dedication to environmental conservation.

As many as 10,000 animals, including cows, fish, eels, turtles, clams and birds were saved from slaughter by 300 or so citizens who had donated cash to return them to nature. The 30 heads of cattle were given to poor farmers to help on their farms.

Before ceremony began in the afternoon, local folks offering lunch to Provost Sangkharaj Pongsak Wuttiyano, director of Jittapawan College, and over 50 monks.  Afterwards, local children paid respects to their mothers, wai-ing at their mother’s feet, promising to be good for the remainder of the year.

Later in the day on August 11 at Central Festival Pattaya Beach, Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome presented Mother of the Year awards to 80 chosen women to commemorate HM the Queen’s 80th birthday.  The theme of the event was “Love Mom…Angel for Children”.  The outstanding mothers were selected from 38 Pattaya communities.

People earn merit by showering flowers over bird cages to spare their lives.People earn merit by showering flowers over bird cages to spare their lives.

Cultural Minister Sukumol Kunplome (seated) opens the ceremony in front of Banglamung City Hall, wishing HM the Queen a happy 80th birthday, August 12.Cultural Minister Sukumol Kunplome (seated) opens the ceremony in front of Banglamung City Hall, wishing HM the Queen a happy 80th birthday, August 12.

Children pay respects to their mothers by bowing at their mother’s feet and promising to be good for the remainder of the year.Children pay respects to their mothers by bowing at their mother’s feet and promising to be good for the remainder of the year.

Students from Pattaya School No. 9 perform for their mothers at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.Students from Pattaya School No. 9 perform for their mothers at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.

Older students from Pattaya School #9 perform ancient Thai dance for the Mothers of the Year ceremony at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.Older students from Pattaya School #9 perform ancient Thai dance for the Mothers of the Year ceremony at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.

It becomes quite emotional when children rush into their mother’s arms.It becomes quite emotional when children rush into their mother’s arms.

Sonthaya Kunplome (left), former minister of tourism and sports, along with his wife, Cultural Minister Sukumol Kunplome (2nd left), offer alms to young monks in front of Banglamung City Hall.Sonthaya Kunplome (left), former minister of tourism and sports, along with his wife, Cultural Minister Sukumol Kunplome (2nd left), offer alms to young monks in front of Banglamung City Hall.

Sheraton Pattaya General Manager Michael Delargy presides over the cone flower opening ceremony and laying of a paanpum in front of HM the Queen’s image on Mother’s Day.Sheraton Pattaya General Manager Michael Delargy presides over the cone flower opening ceremony and laying of a paanpum in front of HM the Queen’s image on Mother’s Day.

A young boy ‘wais’ his grandmother after his parents had already presented jasmine flowers, one of the activities in the Love to 80 Outstanding Mothers in Pattaya celebration at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.A young boy ‘wais’ his grandmother after his parents had already presented jasmine flowers, one of the activities in the Love to 80 Outstanding Mothers in Pattaya celebration at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.

Some of the outstanding mothers awarded certificates from the mayor at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.Some of the outstanding mothers awarded certificates from the mayor at Central Festival Pattaya Beach.

A monsoon flooded Beach Road making it impossible to form and march in a parade.A monsoon flooded Beach Road making it impossible to form and march in a parade.

Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome leads Pattaya administrators and local citizens in a candlelight ceremony in honor of HM the Queen.Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome leads Pattaya administrators and local citizens in a candlelight ceremony in honor of HM the Queen.

During a break in the rain, the clouds parted, giving way to beautiful performances under the starry sky.During a break in the rain, the clouds parted, giving way to beautiful performances under the starry sky.

Top police officials present their paanpums in front of HM the Queen’s image.Top police officials present their paanpums in front of HM the Queen’s image.

Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome, on behalf of everyone in Pattaya’s government, makes an offering of flowers to Her Majesty the Queen’s portrait at Bali Hai.Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome, on behalf of everyone in Pattaya’s government, makes an offering of flowers to Her Majesty the Queen’s portrait at Bali Hai.

Looking towards the heavens, singing happy birthday to HM the Queen at Bali Hai.Looking towards the heavens, singing happy birthday to HM the Queen at Bali Hai.

The few, the brave, the Pattaya Mail team, at least some of us, were out there showing our devotion to our beloved Queen, Mother of the Thai nation.The few, the brave, the Pattaya Mail team, at least some of us, were out there showing our devotion to our beloved Queen, Mother of the Thai nation.

Despite the rain, People sing happy birthday and say prayers during the candlelight ceremony at Bali Hai pier.Despite the rain, People sing happy birthday and say prayers during the candlelight ceremony at Bali Hai pier.

When the rain finally let up, for the brave who showed their devotion by enduring the mini-monsoon, it was time to pose for commemorative photos.When the rain finally let up, for the brave who showed their devotion by enduring the mini-monsoon, it was time to pose for commemorative photos.

Even heavy rain couldn’t keep her subjects from presenting flower arrangements to HM the Queen on her 80th birthday.Even heavy rain couldn’t keep her subjects from presenting flower arrangements to HM the Queen on her 80th birthday.