BENSON — The second City of Benson Lantern Festival set this Saturday after a pounding rain storm washed out the originally scheduled date is shaping up to be a grand event.

Aim of the event is to bring residents and visitors together in an entertaining venue while also bringing them to the community.

And if the inaugural festival is to be any type of indicator, the driving range at San Pedro Valley Golf Course will be the hub of activity. Gates open at 2 p.m. with the simultaneous release of lanterns lighting up the autumn night skies at 7 p.m.

Traditional for centuries in Asian countries and cultures, the lantern festivals — participants simultaneously release lit lanterns against a night-sky canvas -— offering an awe-inspiring spectacle, past participants noted.

“Get ready for a fun-filled time with the family! Mark milestones, set goals, celebrate the life of a loved one, or send up a prayer as we light our lanterns and watch this spectacular event!,” state’s the city’s promotion.

Businesses and residents have been quick to embrace and throw their support behind the festival, evidenced by the larger number of sponsorships which includes the San Pedro Valley News-Sun.

Tickets are currently on sale, visit the city’s website. The event also features an “amazing kid zone” for boys and girls 5 and under. Admission without a lantern is $15 per person. Lanterns are $25 and includes admission for two and kid zone admission. Tickets at the gate, available until 6 p.m., $30 for two admissions and a lantern. Entry gates close at 6 with the event lasting until 8 p.m. Outside food, drink or pets not permitted.

“This event is a chance for everyone to come together,” Vivian has said. “Not only are we inviting everyone and, hopefully, helping our businesses out a little with increased sales, but we’re also providing an event for those who don’t normally use the golf course and those who do. Events are amenities for residents and surrounding community. I hope everyone will consider coming, it’s an opportunity to experience another beautiful evening in Benson!”

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