The annual Heroines Festival, celebrating the defeat of Burmese marauders attempting to take Phuket in 1785, is usually over three weeks, with festivities centred at Thalang Victory Field, the site marked as where the two Heroines, Thao Thep Krasattri and Thao Sri Soonthorn, led the Phuket contingent in repelling the Burmese invasion.
Festivities traditionally include the usual Thai fair stalls of food and live entertainment, including a light and sound show, which has now been cancelled.
This year the festival will feature only merit-making activities, Phuket Vice Governor Piyaphong Chuwong has announced.
V/Gov Piyapong explained that organisers’ primary concern was the spread of COVID-19, leading to the decision to not include any festivities that will lead to large gathering of people.
“We are thinking of the social risk and safety as our priority,” V/Gov Piyapong said.
“We will still hold the festival with some religious activities under the New Normal measures, but we will control the number of people allowed to attend each activity,” he added.
As such, only two activities involving the blessings of Buddhists monks and the traditional wreath-laying ceremony will be held this year.
A mass ordination of monks to bless the two Heroines will be held at Wat Thepwanaram (Wat Manik), in Baan Manik, Thalang, on Mar 6.
In the morning of Mar 12, merit-making ceremonies will be held at Wat Muang Komanraphat, the temple closest to Thalang Victory Field.
On Mar 13, there will be the annual wreath-laying ceremony and the recitals of praises for Thao Thep Krasattri and Thao Sri Soonthorn at the Heroines Monument on Thepkrasattri Rd.