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HAPPENINGS THAILAND

HAPPENINGS THAILAND CHIANG MAI & up north SPOTLIGHT Poi Sang Long Festival Poi Sang Long (Festival of the Jewelled Sons), also known as Buad Luk Kaew (Ordaining the Beloved Sons), represents one of the most important annual events for the Thai Yai people in Mae Hong Son province and takes place just before the Buddhist rain retreat period or Buddhist Lent. Considered a rite of passage ceremony for young boys entering monastic life, the festival begins soon after the school year ends. Groups of boys in full Sang Long dress travel from temple to temple to participate in ceremonies. The ritual climaxes on the third day with an evening event featuring traditional Thai Yai music and dance. April 1 to 4. festivalsofthailand.com C M Y CM MY CY CMY K Busy Bees The importance of bees, beekeeping, and the relationship to the environment can’t be underestimated. This is made most apparent at Chiang Mai’s Bee Conservation and Breeding Centre, one of Thailand’s most interesting agri-tourism spots. Located just 10 kilometres from Chiang Mai, the centre undertakes research to support beekeepers in Northern Thailand. Visitors should contact the centre beforehand and proceed in learning about the life cycles of bees in lectures from bee experts. tourismthailand.org A Potter’s Tranquil Earth The verdant hills north of Chiang Rai provide the natural resources for Doy Din Dang Pottery (red clay hill) while the surrounding tranquil landscape provides the inspiration. After an apprenticeship with a master potter in Japan, Somluk Pantiboon returned to his native Chiang Rai to set up a pottery studio in 1991. Now an internationally renowned artist, Somluk also spent years training local villagers to become skillful potters. His kiln fires and produces vases, bowls, and teapots with his signature designs. While serving an age-old function, his works also showcase a blend of the contemporary and the traditional. dddpottery.com 90