At the end of April, the Buddha’s Birth Day Festival returns to Brisbane for it’s 21st birthday and in announcing the upcoming celebrations this evening, 1,000 Red Chinese Lanterns that are currently hanging throughout the South Bank Parklands are beginning to light up.
Within a few weeks more than 2,000 Red Lanterns will brighten the Parklands and with the inclusion of energy saving LED globes this year together with a range of other sustainable measures, the Festival is now recognised as the largest accredited Climate Friendly Event in the Southern Hemisphere.
The origin of the lanterns dates back nearly two and a half thousand years to the Han Dynasty where on special occasions people hung the red lanterns on their front doors to bring good fortune and prosperity to the household.
During the history of the Festival over 2 million visitors have basked in the glow of the lanterns embracing the rich and memorable cultural experience on offer. Venerable Chueh Shan, Abbess of the Chung Tian Buddhist Temple, the co-organiser of the Buddha Birth Day Festival, reflects that “these Red Lanterns symbolises hope for the world. A small good action can make a difference, for a single lantern allows one person to read but 2,000 lanterns can brighten up a whole Parklands”.
Planning for switching to LED’s began 2 years ago and Stephen Chang, President of Buddha Light International Association of Queensland was thankful that Law Firm McCullough Robertson, a long supporter of the Buddha Birth Day Festival, has stepped in to support the lanterns over the next three years.
The Buddha Birth Day Festival is listed as one of the Iconic Events of Queensland and Signature Events of Brisbane, commemorating Australia’s harmonious diversity. With 200,000 visitors, over 1,000 volunteers, 350 performers and 180 events, this family friendly event is Queensland’s biggest birthday celebration and the largest annual commemoration of Buddha’s birthday in the world.