THAI NEW YEAR FACTS
The City of Los Angeles officially recognized the contributions of the Thai community by approving a section of Hollywood Boulevard between Western Avenue and Normandie Avenue where Thai businesses flourish as “Thai Town” in October 1999 as a result of a protracted community campaign led by the Thai Community Development Center.
The committee unanimously agreed to celebrate the Thai New Year or Songkran Festival as the major Thai event, and decided it would be held every year on the first Sunday in April.
With the aim of promoting Thai Town in LA and Thailand’s tourism, the Thai New Year’s Day committee will collaborate with Thai government sectors (i.e. Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Tourism Authority of Thailand, etc.) and other organizations in the USA, including “Thailand’s Team” (Royal Thai Consulate General in LA, Thai Trade Center, Board Of Investment, and Kasikorn Bank) to strongly increase the confidence of international tourists toward Thailand and resurrect the success of Thailand’s travel industry.
At the first meeting on April 28, 2017, the committee announced the purposes of the Thai New Year’s Day 2018 Songkran Festival as follow: For this 12th Annual Thai New Year Songkran Festival, the committee agreed to the following Purposes:
- To expose Thai traditional and folk art and culture to the diverse communities of Los Angeles to increase the appreciation of Thai culture with the help of the Thai government, Thai merchants, and local Thai organizations.
- To showcase Thailand as a charming destination to visit, which in turn will help generate tourism in Thailand.
- To demonstrate the political efficacy of the Thai community in Los Angeles to all levels of the US government in order to secure greater benefits and funds for the development of our community.
- To increase the spotlight on “Thai Town” on Hollywood Boulevard and to encourage visitors to explore Thai Town and boost the local economy.
Based on past festivals, the committee is highly confident that this year’s festival will surpass last year’s success. As evidence of this year’s crowning achievement, there has been a significant increase in support for the event by major sponsors. For example, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will be posting billboards promoting the festival on the bus and subway stations throughout Los Angeles County this year.