Thai New Yorkers celebrate Songkran in Elmhurst

Back row, center, from left to right: Royal Thai Consul General Nipon Petchpornprapas, Councilmember Daniel Dromm, U.S. Rep. Grace Meng and Philippine Consul General Claro S. Cristobal ring in the new year with residents representing every region of Thailand at the Fourth Annual Thai New Year Festival and Street Fair in Elmhurst. Photo courtesy of Councilmember Daniel Dromm’s Office.

Back row, center, from left to right: Royal Thai Consul General Nipon Petchpornprapas, Councilmember Daniel Dromm, U.S. Rep. Grace Meng and Philippine Consul General Claro S. Cristobal ring in the new year with residents representing every region of Thailand at the Fourth Annual Thai New Year Festival and Street Fair in Elmhurst. Photo courtesy of Councilmember Daniel Dromm’s Office.

By David Brand

Thai New Yorkers and Queens residents eager for a fun time gathered in Elmhurst on April 20 to celebrate Songkram, the Thai New Year celebration, at an annual festival and street fair.

It was the fourth year in a row that Elmhurst’s Thai Town has hosted the Songkran event on Woodside Avenue between 75th and 77th Street. The second portion of the festival continues at the same spot this Saturday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Songkran is the most important holiday for the Thai community and features family reunions and symbolic annual house cleaning.

This year’s event was hosted by Councilmember Daniel Dromm and business leader Juttana “Moo” Rimreartwate. The celebration included martial arts, music and dance, and a performance by members of Ru Paul’s Drag Race

“I am delighted to co-host another Songkran celebration in the heart of Elmhurst’s Little Thailand once again,” Dromm said. “From their enticing cuisine to a rich performing arts tradition, Elmhurst’s Thai community has so much to offer. It was a pleasure to participate in this exciting celebration alongside residents from every nation.”