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Ready to Thai one on for New Year

Buddhist monk the venerable Penerable Pannyavaro at the Bodhi Tree Forest Monastery and Retreat centre at Tullera.
Buddhist monk the venerable Penerable Pannyavaro at the Bodhi Tree Forest Monastery and Retreat centre at Tullera. Jacklyn Wagner

THAI New Year celebrations will be in full swing at the Bodhi Tree Forest Monastery at Tullera this weekend led by the venerable Penerable Pannyavaro, a Buddhist monk.

Last year hundreds of Northern Rivers residents participated in Songkran, the most celebrated festival in Thailand, and organisers have again opened the monastery doors to the public.

This year’s festivities will begin at 9.30am on Sunday with a gathering of Buddhists and friends at the main hall. Cultural performances will continue throughout the day and will include dharma talk, chanting and water blessings

Festival organiser Oan Gasorn said Songkran was the most important holiday on the Thai calendar and was the equivalent of Christmas celebrations in Australia – except for one crucial reversal.

“Instead of a grey-haired bearded man giving gifts to children, this is a festival where children give offerings and gifts to honour elderly people,” she said.

Page MP Janelle Saffin will open festivities and all proceeds will go towards a meditation retreat centre.


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