Lantern painting, pet carnival among year-end festivities for 200,000 residents

SINGAPORE - The year will close for some 200,000 residents with grassroots celebrations that range from lantern painting to a pet carnival.

The People's Association (PA) Grassroots Organisations will be organising a variety of year-end events across Singapore to wrap up SG50.

On Boxing Day this Saturday, pet lovers can gather at Tiong Bahru Park for a Paws and Fur Carnival, where they can pick up tips on how to massage animals or adopt pets. The event will also feature a Pet Idol competition and stage games.

On Sunday, Sengkang South will host a Family Day Carnival behind Sengkang Green Primary School, which will include a contest for residents to paint sky lanterns. They can also pen down their wishes for their loved ones on the lanterns, which will be displayed at next year's Chingay parade.

This will be followed in the evening by a fruit-tasting fiesta in Jalan Kayu, which will also see the launch of the Sengkang South Food Relief Programme. The programme will sponsor food rations for a hundred needy families in the area on a monthly basis.

The year will close with countdown parties in Woodlands and Sengkang. The Countdown @ North party in Woodlands Link will feature stage performances by celebrity host Hossan Leong and singer Sufie Rashid, who won Malaysian TV singing contest Akademi Fantasia in October.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will attend the Sengkang Riverside Park countdown celebrations for Ang Mo Kio GRC and Sengkang West. There, residents are invited to break a local record for the largest word formation made of light sticks, as well as draw on sky lanterns in memory of the late founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.

PA chief executive Ang Hak Seng said: "2015 was a very special and memorable year when Singapore came together as one people. In the same vein, as we wrap up SG50, our grassroots volunteers are bringing together people from all walks of life, including the less fortunate... as we look ahead to SG100 with confidence."

oliviaho@sph.com.sg