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Lanterns will cast glow across Trinity River as part of annual downtown Fort Worth festival

June 22,2023

See full Fort Worth Report article by Juan Salinas II here.

Lanterns will cast glow across Trinity River as part of annual downtown Fort Worth festival

“It can get pretty emotional,” said Hayden Earl, a Water Festival community outreach coordinator. 

Earl has seen people use these festivals as a way to celebrate or grieve about aspects of their lives. 

The third annual festival will be June 24, when the Trinity River will be aglow.

Fort Worthians will release LED-lit lanterns during the annual Water Lantern Festival starting at 6 p.m. Saturday near Panther Island Pavilion, 395 Purcey St. 

Around 8:30 p.m., attendees will begin designing their lanterns and then hold a group meditation. They will release the lanterns into the water around 9 p.m. 

A select few will go up in front of attendees and share the meaning behind their lanterns. The lanterns can represent a new chapter in life, a dead family member or friend or something else that is unique to that person, Earl said. 

Attendees will receive a goodie bag containing playing and conversation cards to encourage people to socialize with each other. 

Several food trucks will be at the event. However, attendees may bring their own food. 

The festival also will feature live musical performances.

Lanterns are made out of rice paper and wood in an effort to be more environmentally friendly, officials said. 

All profits from the event are donated to, a global nonprofit organization that wants to ensure access to safe water and sanitation for people.

“Go with an intention, a good attitude, and you will have the time of your life,” Earl said. 

If you go

What: Water Lantern Festival
When: 6 p.m. Saturday, June 24
Where: Panther Island Pavilion, 395 Purcey St. in Fort Worth
Cost: Ticket prices for the festival vary. You can buy tickets here

Children under 7 are free, but they will not receive a lantern kit. The festival also offers ticket protection so attendees can receive a refund if they do not go to the event. Base ticket prices are:

  • $12.45 for a children under 14
  • $26.98 for an adult ticket
  • $42.99 for a deluxe ticket
  • $67.72 for a date night special for two people

Juan Salinas II is a reporting fellow for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at or on Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.

This article first appeared on Fort Worth Report and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.

Location Mentioned: Panther Island Pavilion