WASHINGTON — Ever since I first saw the Disney movie Tangled, I’ve been enthralled with the lantern lighting scene. The beauty, the magic, the emotion of that scene still chokes me up every single time. I don’t know what it is about sending up a lantern that feels significant. Almost spiritual. Like letting go of a part of yourself, or maybe gaining perspective by lifting up your consciousness to a higher place.
Regardless of the reason, imagine my surprise and delight when I found out there is a REAL lantern lighting festival! And it’s actually somewhere I was already planning to be. Double score!! Wanna join me? Seriously, check it out…
There are literally thousands of people. Which normally isn’t an attraction for me as I’m a country kid, but roll with it for a sec. The more people, the more lanterns. The more lanterns, the more awesome twinkly-twinkly-in-the-night-sky! So…thousands of people. They setup a whole carnival event with games and food and the whole shebang. There are bounce houses for the kids, campfires for the grownups, and marshmallows to roast and s’mores to be had by one and all.
Basically it’s just a giant, laid-back party of people waiting in anticipation for THE moment. One of my favorite parts of our traveling lifestyle is the campfire time with friends. And you can always make new friends around a campfire. There’s some kind of magic that happens there. So imagine hundreds of campfires, everyone making new friends or hanging out with old ones. Building new relationships.
And then the main event. Some people are there just for the joy of the spectacle. Others have something they need to let go of, or something they need to say. Some people write messages on their lanterns. Things to release. Blessings to wish for. Hopes to be made known to the universe. I bet some people even write silly rhymes on their lanterns just for fun!
No matter what you choose to write (or not write) on your lantern, the next part is the best. A little after sunset the launch begins. I couldn’t tell from the video if there is any choreography to it or not, but there were definitely lanterns high in the sky while others were still releasing theirs, so it was a continuous chain of sparkling lights.
It was absolutely stunning. Even in a tiny video. And yeah… I got a little choked up.
This is the kind of thing that brings out the very best of humanity. A moment to reflect. A moment to unite in something just for the joy of it.
To create wonder, and then revel in it.
I sure hope you’ll join me!
Things you need to know:
• Cost: $45/adult $15/kid (kids get a gift included)
• Time/Date: Varies. I’m going to the one in Salt Lake City, Utah on May 19th, 2018.
• Gates open at 4:30pm, Sunset 8:40pm,
• Lantern Launch 9:55pm
• Location: Varies. Mine is at 512 Sheep Ln, Grantsville, UT 84074.
• Website: https://www.thelanternfest.com/home (scroll down and pick Salt Lake to come with me!)
• They don’t allow pets, so make sure you have alternate arrangements.
• Kids under 13 aren’t allowed to light their own lanterns for safety reasons.
This post was written by Heather Ledeboer of Faith Takes Flight. You can find more great ideas on places to go & things to see on IndieRV Travel Network! IndieRV provides crowd-sourced content on the Best of the Best RV destinations, activities, attractions and more! Use the promo code RVDAILYREPORT for 50% off a 1 year membership on us!