The Jakarta Post
The first midnight sky of 2016 will be welcomed in Magelang, Central Java, by thousands of beautiful lanterns planned to be released at exactly 00:00 a.m. at Borobudur temple and its surroundings.
According to PT Taman Wisata Candi Borobudur, Prambanan and Ratu Boko (PT TWC) marketing and cooperation director Sahala "Ricky" Parlindungan Siahaan, 2,016 lanterns have been prepared by the company and local communities, with around 1,600 to be released at the Lumbhini Park in the temple's complex.
"The rest of the lanterns will be released by local residents who live in 20 villages around Borobudur," said Ricky as quoted by kompas.com on Tuesday.
The activity, he said, represented a symbol of gratitude to God for the passing of 2015, a year full of challenges and blessings, as well as a symbol of hope that the upcoming year would also be full of blessings.
Ricky added that the release of the lanterns was part of an effort to attract tourists, especially domestic ones who usually preferred to celebrate New Year's Eve abroad.
"We want to change people's lifestyles; it's a pity that they choose to spend their money [to celebrate New Year's Eve] in other countries, while we are able to hold more beautiful and interesting events [in Indonesia]," said Ricky.
The activity is part of PT TWC's program for the New Year's Eve celebrations entitled "Borobudur Nite 2015, Music, Lanterns & Prayers", which will also feature an interfaith prayer and various traditional and contemporary art performances with Rio Febrian and Fariz RM as the guest stars.
PT TWX marketing head Emilia Eny Utari said that visitors could join the celebration by purchasing festival or platinum class tickets with a starting price of Rp 150,000 (US$11) and Rp 500,000, respectively.
"Foreign tourists as well as visitors from Jakarta, Lampung, Sumatra and Central Java have already booked tickets to see the shows. Lots of others buy on the night," said Emilia. (afr/kes)(+)
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