Lanterns from the canceled 2020 NC Chinese Lantern Festival pop up around Cary

CARY, N.C. (WTVD) -- The North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival is not happening this year, but you can still see some of the beautiful lanterns.

COVID-19 forced organizers to cancel the full festival at Koka Booth Amphitheatre in the name of safety. However, some of the lanterns that would have been up at the festival are being displayed in Cary.

"We worked closely with Tianyu, our partner in the festival, to hand-pick a collection of lanterns to share with the citizens of Cary," Town of Cary Cultural Arts Manager William Lewis said. "So many people enjoy the unique experience and the exquisite beauty of the lanterns every year at Koka Booth. We are thrilled to bring a piece of that to downtown Cary."

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The North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival is not happening this year, but you can still see some of the beautiful lanterns.



The lanterns are on display outside at the following locations in Cary:

  • Page-Walker Arts & History Center
  • Herb C. Young Community Center
  • Cary Chamber of Commerce
  • Fidelity Bank
  • Old Cary Library open space
  • Downtown Park


All of the lanterns are easily viewed from your car. But if you do go outside to view the lanterns, please wear a mask and be sure to stand at least 6 feet away from anyone who does not live with you.

The North Carolina Chinese Lantern Festival started in 2015 and has grown every year--setting an attendance record in 2019 with more than 121,000 visitors.

Festival organizers said they are already working on plans for the 2021 festival to return to Cary's Koka Booth Amphitheatre.

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The wonders of illumination!

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