Travel

Dear Lantern Festivals

October 16, 2015

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Festivals are always a good idea if you want a weekend away with your friends. My friends and I packed out bags recently and drove about five hours towards sin city- Las Vegas. What kind of festival could we possibly go to you ask? The RISE Lantern Festival.

The lantern festival was held 30 miles outside Las Vegas on the Moapa Indian Reservation in the Mojave Desert. It was a night of spending quality time with the people that mean most to you. This festival was unlike anything I’ve ever been to before and it was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen in my life. The festival is about being in the moment and appreciating what you have right there in front of you. I recommend everyone go to a lantern festival at least once in your life.

Since this was my first time, I learned a few tips and tricks for next time I go…because I am going again!

Here’s what I learned:

Allot time for traffic. There’s only two roads that lead to the location. It will take about an hour and a half to get there if you leave later in the afternoon from Las Vegas.

It’s okay if you and your friends are in different sections. As long as you check-in at your designated check-in site you can sit freely with your friends wherever you like.

Bring paper. It was difficult to get our lanterns to catch fire so we ripped our tickets and put it in our lanterns which helped a lot! We got 3 out of 4 lanterns to burn up into the sky.

Wear clothes you’re okay with getting dirty. This festival is not about wearing your cutest outfit. The walk is fairly long and it is very dusty there. You’re also going to be sitting on thin mats on the dirt. My boots were black when I got there but they were white when I left.

When lighting lanterns teamwork is best! The lanterns are fairly large, so the best strategy we found was someone holds the top and another holds the base of the lantern. The key is to wait for the lantern to fill up with hot air so it can fly away properly. What makes it easier is if you bring the lantern closer to the ground while your waiting so you can hold it better.

Bring different markers to decorate your lantern. Rise provides one black pen, one mat and 2 lanterns per person. If you really want to make it more meaningful think about how you want to decorate your lantern before you send it off. It makes the process more meaningful when you have write your intentions, prayer, hopes, or dreams on there.

Enjoy the moment. The view is so beautiful that a picture or video needs to be taken! But once you get a few pictures or a couple good videos I suggest to stop and take in the beauty. It’s much more fulfilling that way!

The Rise Lantern Festival is definitely an event that I plan to go back to every year. It was one of the most fulfilling weekends I’ve ever had. So keep these tips in mind when you decide to go next year.

I propose you make your own lanterns at home and send it off with a couple friends! It’ll definitely uplift your spirits for the rest of the week.

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