Pattaya Vegetarian Festival starts with no parade, takeout only

Wisit Chawalitnititham (right) foundation president, accompanied by Prasit Thongtitcharoen, chairman of rescue unit together with the committee perform the ceremony to call on ‘Sei Tee Ti’, god of earth and sky by hoisting the golden lantern to the top of a pole.

The Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation kicked off a Pattaya Vegetarian Festival like no other, with no alms house, no parade and no food booths to prevent an outbreak of Covid-19.

Foundation President Wisit Chaowalitnittithum and rescue unit chief Prasit Thongthitcharoen hoisted a lantern up a flagpole Oct. 5 to invite the Chinese god Sei Tee Ti to the festival, a tradition for the festival, which this year runs through Oct. 14.

In a nod to coronavirus restrictions, the usual Chinese lion and dragon parade and dances were canceled, the incense ceremony was snuffed out and the food booths were closed.

Chinese donut chef Jae Tat was there, however, offering veggie donuts for 20 baht per box. Also for sale were takeaway boxes of pad Thai and pad siew at reasonable prices.

Jae Tat, a well know sweets vendor in the Chinese community, prepares ‘Khanom Wong’ a Chinese style donut which she sells for 20 baht a box.