The Singapore HeritageFest 2014 returns from 18 to 27 July with the theme “Our Islands, Our Home”.
Now into its 11th year, the spotlight this year focuses not only on the main island of Singapore but the surrounding islands as well. Singapore’s island heritage will be explored through exhibitions and activities at festival hubs around the island and through festival programmes.
How did Singapore come to become home to our forefathers? Why did migrants flock to Singapore and how did this lead to our blend of cultures and sense of place?
River Nights at Asian Civilsations Museum
Kicking off the Singapore HeritageFest 2014 is River Nights at Asian Civilisations Musueum on 18 and 19 July. Taking place from 7 pm onwards, the event promises an evening filled with music and dance performances along the Singapore River’s Promenade.
The whole family can browse through craft wares and enjoy food at Craft Bay while kids can look forward to a midnight treasure hunt, go nighttime fishing on dry land and engage in fun crafts and games at Kids Point.
The Asian Civilisations Museum will also stay open till late to welcome visitors into the night.
UNDERWATER ADVENTURE: Digital Playground in a Mall
Bringing heritage to neighbourhoods across Singapore are 11 heritage hubs. This year, these are Westgate, Tiong Bahru Plaza, Changi Airport, Changi City Point, NEX, National Museum of Singapore, Velocity, Century Square, City Square Mall, URA City Gallery and Plaza Singapura.
At Plaza Singapura, Traditional Toys and Games let participants relive yesteryear through traditional games such as five stones, kutikuti and an old-school inspired playground.
Childhood stories are retold at Century Square where Tales From Our Shores will recount local myths and legends such as how Bukit Merah got its name and the origins of Sisters’ Islands.
Lighthouses of Singapore at NEX will provide a glimpse into the lighthouses surrounding Singapore, their construction, how they operate and their role over the last 160 years of Singapore’s history.
Download Little Day Out’s Handy Guide to the Singapore HeritageFest 2014’s Festival Hubs below.
Singapore HeritageFest 2014 Programmes
With an overwhelming response to the trails offered this year, island trails A Night of Nanyin at Kusu Island, Lighthouse Trail, Tanjong Rimau Walk and Homes, Hill and Habitats: A Morning at St John’s, Lazarus and Seringat Island have been fully subscribed. More trails are expected to be more announced by the National Heritage Board in the coming weeks and those interested in the island trails can register their interest by Sunday, 6 July, here.
Other than the island trails, other programmes taking place during HeritageFest 2014 explore aspects of Singapore’s heritage.
Kampong Play takes place on 26 July at the MOE Heritage Centre. Here, families can explore the history of Singapore’s education service and try out kampong games and make traditional kueh.
Ever wondered what Clan Associations do? Several will be hosting open houses during the HeritageFest. The Char Yong (Dapu) Clan Association, a Hakka Clan, will run guided tours of its building and staging cultural performances and tastings of traditional Hakka food such as Soon Pan and Abacus Seeds. The Ee Hoe Hean Club, Gan Clan and Singapore Poon Yue Association among others will also be holding open houses. The Singapore Hok San Association will also be staging Lion Dance performance during theirs on 20 July. Registration is required for these visits.
Guided walks will also be held at Fort Canning Hill and the Eurasian Association will also be holding an Open House on the weekends of 19, 20, 26 and 27 July.