Source: Monterey Herald
On November 25, 2004 Monterey Herald reported, "a festival celebrating Thai culture is floating to Marina [CA] for the first time this weekend. The Loy Kratong festival is part Thanksgiving, part Valentine's Day and part toy boat race. The name refers to small boats, made of banana leaves or colored paper, that celebrants use to float flower arrangements, candles and incense down the river on the full moon of November... According to Thailand's government, the origins of the festival are unclear. Nang Napponas, a young Thai queen, apparently launched the first Kratong in the 13th century. One version says that it is an expression of thanks to the water goddess for the use of rivers and canals. Another holds that the elaborate floral arrangements are replicas of a Buddhist shrine."