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Mayor: Water Lantern Festival Promotes Cultural Exchange, Boosts Taipei’s Profile

Mayor joins dignitaries and children at the Xikou Wharf, holding water lanternsOn November 22, Mayor Ko Wen-je attended the 2020 Water Lantern Festival near the Rainbow Bridge in Songshan District. He joined the representatives of Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia at the Xikou Wharf to release the floating lanterns with kids of new immigrant descent.
Before arriving at the event at Chengmei Riverside Park, the mayor stopped by the at Songshan Ciyou Temple and offered his prayers to the Goddess Matsu.
During his address, the mayor noted that water lantern festivals in countries like Vietnam and Thailand have important meanings. Hopefully, releasing the water lanterns will bring away bad luck from the past year to make way for good luck in the coming year.
The city government organized the first Water Lantern Festival in Taipei back in 2017. Now in its fourth year, the mayor believes that holding the event near the Rainbow Bridge in Songshan District in November is very meaningful, given that the Rainbow Bridge itself is a symbol of diversity.
The mayor hopes that through events like the Water Lantern Festival, the residents of the city will have opportunities to learn more about foreign culture, thereby making Taipei-ers more internationalized. He also expressed his gratitude to the numerous foreign dignitaries for bringing the fine foods and attires of their home countries to the event, allowing citizens to experience firsthand the rich cultures of Southeast Asia.