Every year around the 6th lunar month, right at the beginning of the rainy season, the sky above Laos and Eastern Thailand are being “bombarded” by uncountable rockets. Originally created in Laos, the Boun Bang Fai Rocket Festival, has been extended to eastern Thailand’s province in the past years and this year, it will take place from May, 13th to 19th.
This annual festival and traditions, generated in a rural country such as Laos, has the aim of asking help to the God of Rain and to encourage him to make it rain, in order to have a good rainy season to growth their rice fields.
The Bang Fai are rockets made of bamboo and colorfully decorated, gunpowder loaded and launched in the air.
Boun Bang Fai festival is celebrated in many villages in Laos, in the outskirts of Vientiane, and in the Thai provinces of Nong Khai and Yasothon. The celebrations consist of music and dance performances, men parading in their wife’s clothes (to anger God of Rain), and, of course, the main attraction: the launch of the rockets with family and friends.
There is a jury to determine the winner for each category, depending of the size of the rocket. They will judge height, distance travelled and beauty of the trail. The rockets which have misfired will be covered or thrown into mud.
Happy rockets trails, with Asian Trails !