Friends and family gathered at the 1000 Lights Water Lantern Festival at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Friends and family gathered at the 1000 Lights Water Lantern Festival at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

1,000 Lights Water Lantern Festival comes to Kirkland

Hundreds gather at Juanita Beach Park for a night of community on Aug. 10.

Hundreds gathered at the 1,000 Lights Water Lantern Festival for a night of purpose and connection.

On Aug. 10, friends and families dispersed throughout the Juanita Beach Park with their water lanterns. The festival was a place for communities to share their hopes and dreams. Many came in remembrance of loved ones or in hope of new beginnings. The festival’s mission is to help people connect with their hopes, dreams and loved ones, past and present.

The festival also included food trucks, local vendors, live entertainment and games. The highlight came after sunset when attendees were invited to place their lighted lanterns into Kirkland’s Juanita Bay.

Ashley Yong of Lynnwood said she was lighting a lantern for all those who have passed from violence.

“There’s been a lot of pain going on in the world,” Yong said. “We’re here for the people we don’t know and remembering their lives… especially to all those who have left the Earth because of gun violence, war and conflict. They are remembered and dearly loved.”

Lantern festivals are held in various locations across the country. This was the first time the event was held in Kirkland. Organizers said all lanterns would be collected after the event. All lanterns are 100 percent biodegradable.

A water lantern that reads, “Practice Aloha” floats away on Juanita Bay. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

A water lantern that reads, “Practice Aloha” floats away on Juanita Bay. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Water lanterns float on Juanita Bay at the 1,000 Lights Water Lantern Festival at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Water lanterns float on Juanita Bay at the 1,000 Lights Water Lantern Festival at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Ivan Lee and Ashley Yong from Lynwood build their lanterns at the 1,000 Lights Water Lantern Festival at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Ivan Lee and Ashley Yong from Lynwood build their lanterns at the 1,000 Lights Water Lantern Festival at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Festival attendees build a lantern at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Festival attendees build a lantern at Juanita Beach Park on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo 
                                Festival attendees wrote positive and hopeful messages like “Love Life” on their lanterns.

Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo Festival attendees wrote positive and hopeful messages like “Love Life” on their lanterns.

Hundreds of water lanterns filled Juanita Bay on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

Hundreds of water lanterns filled Juanita Bay on Aug. 10. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo

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