Lanterns will light up Big Buddha Mountain next weekend as traditional artists put on cultural shows for the 8th Khao Chee Chan Festival.
Chonburi administrator Supoj Pudkietkajon and Rear Adm. Sorakai Sirikanna, vice president of the Khao Chee Chan Cliff Carving Foundation, detailed the program for the Oct. 16-17 festival in Najomtien Subdistrict at an Oct. 8 planning meeting.
The festival, organized every year by the Chonburi Tourism and Sports Department and the Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration, promotes cultural tourism. It also pays tribute to HM the late King Rama IX and late Supreme Patriarch Nyanasamvara who commissioned the laser-carved image.
In addition to the usual lantern parade, the festival will feature a Ramayana Khon mask play performance, an “acid sand” ceremony and the throwing of “kabinlapat” spears by 100 Thai artists.
The royal compositions of HM late King Bhumibol also will be played by the Royal Thai Navy Band while artisans will perform a “thepbanthng” dance and perform shadow plays.
Beginning at 5:30 p.m. each day, the festival also will have booths offering Sattahip-made products.
The sitting Buddha image was carved in the style of the Sukhothai period mixed with Lanna art touches. It is 130 meters tall and 70 meters wide. Buddhist relics are kept inside the chest area.
The project was commissioned by the former Supreme Patriarch to commemorate King Rama IX’s golden jubilee celebrating 50 years on the throne.