Largest Chi­nese lan­tern fes­ti­val

China Daily (USA) - - LIFE | CULTURE - By XIN­HUA in Phoenix, Ari­zona

The largest Chi­nese lan­tern fes­ti­val inUS his­tory, Lights of the­World, kicked off on Fri­day in the cap­i­tal of Ari­zona to boost Sino-US cul­tural ties.

The event last­ing un­til Jan 29 and run­ning through four of the most im­por­tant holidays — Thanks­giv­ing Day, Christ­mas, New Year and Spring Fes­ti­val — is ex­pected to at­tract more than half a mil­lion lo­cal res­i­dents, says Song Yang, vice-chair­man of the US-China Cul­tural and Ed­u­ca­tional Foun­da­tion.

“It is also a good op­por­tu­nity for Amer­i­cans to get to know more about Chi­nese folk art,” he says, adding that cul­ture is a means for peo­ple to ex­change dif­fer­ent ideas and un­der­stand each other.

has been in­vested in Lights of the World, a lan­tern fes­ti­val in Phoenix in the United States.

The fes­ti­val at the Gila River In­dian Com­mu­nity cov­ers about 90,000 square me­ters, and show­cases more than 80 huge lan­tern units.

Amongthe dis­plays, Heaven Tem­ple is about 18 me­ters high and China Dragon is 70 me­ters long.

About 380 Chi­nese craftsmen worked for three months to pre­pare the show and the dis­plays used more than 160 tons of steel and more than four mil­lion lights, says Song, who co-in­vested more than $6 mil­lion in the event with a pri­vate com­pany from South­west China’s Sichuan prov­ince.

“It’s a re­ally good feel­ing to have this fan­tas­tic ex­pe­ri­ence,” says Stephen Rowe Lewis, gov­er­nor of Gila River In­dian Com­mu­nity.

He says it’s a cul­ture event and it’s also an event beyond cul­ture — it’s “an ex­cit­ing thing that will bring our two peo­ple to­gether”.

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