Grand Rapids is joining 19 other cities nationwide for the annual Water Lantern Festival June 30 at Millennium Park.
The Water Lantern Festival will feature food from local food trucks including Kona Ice of West Grand Rapids, Blue Spoon, Ananda Ice, Patty Matters and more. To accompany the food, festival-goers will get a chance to design their own paper lantern to release into the water.
Tickets for the event include entry into the festival, a floating water lantern, a key chain LED flashlight, a marker and a wristband.
The lanterns are made out of rice paper and wood, according to the Water Lantern Festival’s “Environmental” page, making them eco-friendly and biodegradable. After the festival, event organizers and volunteers pick up all of the lanterns released during the festival. According to their website, festival organizers are “committed to leaving each community cleaner than when we arrived. We go to great lengths to ensure a cleaner, more beautiful environment.”
One World Lantern Festival is hosting the festival for the first time in Michigan.
“We have had a few Water Lantern Festivals in other cities around the United States, but this will be our first one in Grand Rapids,” said Rachel Thompson, an Administrative Assistant at One World Lantern Festival. “We have been having lots of fun planning these (festivals).”
The Water Lantern Festival provides communities with the opportunity to gather and participate in releasing paper lanterns into the water. The purpose of releasing the lanterns, according to the Water Lantern Festival website, is to find healing, happiness, love, peace and community connection.
Tickets for the Water Lantern Festival are available through June 30. Early ticket sales are available through May 31 for $25 per person. Regular ticket prices, after May 31, are $40 per person until June 29. Tickets can also be purchased the day of the festival for $45 per person.