With the nation have finished celebrating the Lunar New Year holiday, it is now getting ready to celebrate the Lantern Festival, with several counties scheduled to launch outdoor lantern exhibitions this week.
Lantern Festival celebrations begin on the 15th day of the new year according to the lunar calendar. This year, the Lantern Festival falls on Feb. 21.
Taichung and Taoyuan counties plan to open lantern exhibitions tomorrow, while Taipei City and Miaoli County are planning to host the inauguration of their ceremonies on Friday.
Kaohsiung's lantern exhibition will begin on Saturday.
Besides the exhibitions hosted by local governments, the Taiwan Lantern Festival, sponsored by the Tourism Bureau and the Tainan County Government, will begin on Thursday next week.
Some counties, however, have chosen to start early. The exhibition in Taitung, for example, was launched on Feb 1.
The one in Taipei County started on Monday.
Some of the best-known traditional events will also be held during the festival, including the Tainan County's Yenshui Township (鹽水) beehive firecrackers event, hot-air lanterns in Taipei County's Pingsi Township (平溪) and the "bombing of Han Dan" festivities (炸寒單) in Taitung County.
This year, the Tourism Bureau is incorporating Miaoli County's Hakka-Style Dragon Dance as one of the festival events.
For more information on festival events held in each locality, visit the Taiwan Lantern Festival Web site at taiwan.net.tw/2008TaiwanLantern/link.html.
Visitors to the events may have to wrap up warm as the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said that the cold front that arrived yesterday would continue to affect weather around the nation until Friday.