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Songkran Thai New Year Festival 2013 (San Jose)


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Songkran Thai New Year Festival 2013 (San Jose)

Melanie Wong | Apr 24, 2013 12:59 PM

On Sunday I checked out the Songkran festival in downtown San Jose. I believe this was the first year. The Singha beer garden seemed to be doing a good business on this hot day. The entertainment program was well fleshed out, but the Thai food offerings were scant.

Most of the food vending was from trucks that call on the various hubs in the area. Not fond of Mogo BBQ anyway, and not in the mood for it at a Thai festival. Of the handful of trucks, House of Siam on Wheels was the only one with Thai food and the line looked unbearable to me.

Even though the sponsors advertising in the printed program were mostly restaurants, they did not sell here. Sabieng Thai of Santa Cruz had a stand that was scooping out mound of pad thai. Didn't try it either.

Booths manned by each local Thai temple showed off their fruit carving skills. The photo below is the watermelon masterpiece from Wat Buddhapradeep.

There were a fair amount of vendors including the Asian American Donor Program taking registrations for marrow/stem cell donors.

When I walked up to the site, I noticed the long lines at Sa-By Thai a block away and wondered if the food was that good. After seeing the festival, it seems more likely that hunger for something Thai to eat was a big factor.

Best part was water splashing and the opportunity to be blessed by the saffron-robed monks.

Had I not enjoyed a Burmese lunch earlier that day, I would have stepped into Dakao or China Chen right there for a bite of something Vietnamese. If the festival continues next year, I wouldn't make a special trip for the food without confirming the offerings in advance.

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