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PHUKET CHARITY: Blazing saddles, bangers and cash

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET CHARITY: Blazing saddles, bangers and cash | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: Members of the Old Bangkok Bangers Rugby Club were in Phuket late last month after a mammoth cycle challenge in aid of a Phuket children’s charity.

The eight fearless men set out from Bangkok on Valentines Day, and for five energy-sapping days labored on bicycles to reach Phuket in one piece – all in aid of raising 500,000 baht for the Asia Center Foundation (ACF).

The ACF is a charity organization working for disadvantaged children in Phuket since 2002.

Presently, the ACF has to rent facilities for all its projects, but they’re hoping to raise enough money to construct a permanent youth center in Kathu.

The Old Bangkok Bangers were only too happy to help out, with all funds raised through their epic, 957-kilometer bike ride going directly to the ACF building fund.

After winding down in Patong on the evening of their arrival, the lads donned their colorful cycling attire and paid a visit to the rented childcare center in Kathu to meet the children.

This was the second time that three of the lads saddled up and pedaled from Bangkok to Phuket for charity. Bob Pearson, Peter Burgess and Jeff Klentzi raised 350,000 baht for the ACF last year.

“To be honest, the trip was tough going, but also a lot of fun. It’s a great charity and all the guys are happy to help,” Bob said.

“The routine over the five-day ride was to wake up at 5:30am, have breakfast and hit the road. We were usually on the road for eight or nine hours. It worked out roughly to about 180km per day,” he added.

According to Jeff, there were also some tasty perks along the way.

“The last day was the longest ride. We did 192km, but it was broken up with a wonderful bacon and egg sandwich in Khao Lak. The day started off with a gentle climb but turned into a sprint on the approach to Khao Lak…. It’s amazing what a bacon butty will do to people.

“We rode over Sarasin Bridge into Phuket at 2pm and then the serious stuff started.
“The three hills after Surin Beach were hard work. The Kamala hill was the toughest I’ve ever experienced, but we all conquered it with plenty of gasping,” he said.

When an aching Peter was asked whether he would be interested in making the return trip to Bangkok by bike, he replied in the negative, saying, “Honestly, I’d be prepared to pay double whatever the airfare is going to be.”

Kuzhali Cogan, financial manager at ACF, was delighted to show the Bangkok Bangers around their facility and thanked them for helping make a real difference in the lives of Phuket’s disadvantaged kids.

“Every last drop of financial support is needed and is very welcome. We rely solely on donations so we can pay for simple things like stationary and uniforms for the kids.

“The donations we get from the Old Bangkok Bangers are fantastic and much appreciated by everyone at ACF,” she added.

— Andrew Jennings

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Technology

Cyber minister wants Netflix-like Thai streaming platform

Jack Burton

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Cyber minister wants Netflix-like Thai streaming platform | The Thaiger
PHOTO: TheSmartLocal

Thailand’s minister of digital economy and society, aka. “cyber minister” says that Thailand should have its own streaming platform to bring in revenue and promote Thai movies and television overseas. Puttipong Punnakan remarked at a forum that creating a Netflix-like platform to stream and sell Thai films and series to foreign audiences would reel some sweet, sweet subscription revenue into the kingdom. He also says that the government would help support the promotion of the entertainment sector, following South Korea’s highly successful lead.

“Why doesn’t Thailand have a Thai social media or online services platform of our own? We’re always using foreign ones, sending advertising revenue and online shopping revenue overseas.”

“If Thailand can assemble some good content, then we can export it in the same way South Korea does. Team Thailand will consist of the private sector as well as the support of the government.”

California-based streaming giant Netflix, hugely popular among middle-class Thais and expats alike, has a wide range of Thai movies and series, as well as Thai-language series which it produces. But whether a Thai version could actually succeed remains in doubt, as the Thai government isn’t known for creating popular media, especially the current government.

During his junta years, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha’s weekly program reached record lows in viewership. A government-sponsored film promoting “12 Values” expounded by Prayut was also ridiculed on social media. And do you remember his song “Bringing the Happiness Back to Thailand’? (below… but only you REALLY have to).

One Thai political party has even publicly denounced Netflix’s billboard ads of its “Sex Education” show, much to the mockery of youths across the country.

SOURCE: Khaosod English

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Entertainment

Bangkok’s legendary Scala cinema is closing

Jack Burton

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Bangkok’s legendary Scala cinema is closing | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Times of India

Bangkok’s venerable Scala cinema announced yesterday that it will stop its movie showing operations and let other businesses rent the venue for their activities or special screenings until the end of 2020, when its land contract expires. Scala, located in Pathumwan district, is the last standalone movie theatre in Bangkok.

The 1,000 seat cinema was built in 1969 and named after Milan’s Teatro alla Scala. It’s owned by Apex Group, which used to operate 3 other standalone cinemas in Bangkok: Sala Chalermthai Theatre, which was demolished in 1989; Siam Theatre, which shut down in 2010 after being damaged in a fire, and Lido Multiplex, which closed down in 2018 when its contract expired.

Scala had earlier announced that it would close temporarily, from March 18 until May 31, in line with the Emergency Decree to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Among the businesses that were ordered shut were movie theatres, restaurants, massage parlours, fitness centres and others. The restriction was lifted for several businesses, including movie theatres, on June 1, but sadly the Scala is bringing down the curtain on half a century Bangkok’s cinema history.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Crime

Internet scam offers dodgy amulets for lottery wins

Jack Burton

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Internet scam offers dodgy amulets for lottery wins | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Chiang Rai Times

Police are warning of new internet scam offering lucky amulets to guarantee lottery success, claiming, falsely, that they’ve had helped celebrities win the lottery multiple times. The announcement from the deputy spokesman for the Royal Thai police yesterday.

“Investigation officers have looked into this matter and found a group of people who offered to buy lottery tickets after they had won the prizes in the latest drawing, so that they could take a picture and post on social media claiming it was won by celebrities. Such an act is a violation of the Computer-related Crime Act of 2007.”

The Act says that those who key into a computer system distorted or forged information or data, in a manner likely to cause damage to another person or the public will be subject to imprisonment of up to 5 years and/or a fine of up to 100,000.

“Lottery is a game of chance with no way to guarantee success, therefore people should consider carefully before buying anything that claims to bring luck to the owner. If you were damaged by, or have information regarding this kind of internet scam, please contact Police Cyber Taskforce hotline at 1599, 1155 or 191.”

Amulet scams have been a popular inhabitant of the top ten local scams for Thais. THIS is from a temple in Phuket that was ripping off Chinese tourists selling off cheap plastic amulets for exorbitant prices with promises of ‘lucky’ or ‘magic’ powers.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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