Chinese Lantern Festival in Cary sets attendance records over first 2 weeks

Wake County News

CARY, N.C. (WNCN) — The North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival held at Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary announced Monday that they have set attendance records since opening in November.

According to a release from Booth Amphitheatre, more than 56,000 visitors attended in the first two weeks of the festival’s opening on Nov. 19.

In 2019, the last year the festival was held, that number was 24,280. This year’s two-week attendance is up more than 130 percent as compared to 2019, officials said.

This past Saturday night set a new one-night attendance record with 8,321 visitors. Booth officials credited “the balmy temperatures” for getting more people through the gates.

The festival was canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. William Lewis, the town’s Cultural Arts manager, said in the release that it’s not surprising this year’s attendance has been so strong.

“Welcoming more than 125,000 visitors each year, the North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival is Cary’s largest, most popular cultural event. For many it has become part of their family’s annual tradition,” he said. “Because we had to cancel the festival in 2020, it makes this years’ experience just a little bit sweeter. You tend to linger longer, taking it all in, so as not to the take the experience for granted.”

The North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival is in its sixth year and is open from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. through Jan. 9, 2022.

Click here for tickets and information.

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