Tang Howe Liang’s hallowed Silver medal from the 1960 Olympics. Singapore’s Bronze and Silver medals from the 2012 London Olympics and Paralympics.
These are all national icons that we have read about in the papers.
But did you know that you can see them up close at the YOG Gallery @ Singapore Sports Museum at Kay Siang Road?
First impressions stepping in to the museum are that it is a staid repository of memorabilia. A digital clock at the entrance counts the many days and hours that have passed since the 2010 Youth Olympic Games (YOG).
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Indeed, as you venture in, this impression seems to hold as you pass signboards recounting the history of the Olympic Games. After all, this Gallery was built to commemorate and celebrate Singapore’s hosting of the inaugural YOG in 2010.
However, you will soon find yourself looking at items of greater interest such as the torch used to bear the flame at 2010 Youth Olympic Games. This is mounted in a glass case opposite a torch used in Athens 2004 and various YOG medals are also on display.
Venturing further in, the pride of place belongs to Tang Howe Liang’s much talked about Silver medal, won at the 1960 Rome Olympics. This was before the time of monetary incentives and high performance programmes, representing a beacon for those motivated solely by determination and the search for sporting excellence.
Upstairs, the gallery is dedicated to engaging children in various sports. There are hands-on exhibits where they can climb aboard a horse and imagine themselves as an equestrian, running blocks and other stations representing various sports.
There is even a craft area where children can make their own Olympic torch or laurel.
Also on the second floor, in the “Live Zone” which hosts changing exhibits, is an exhibition dedicated to the London 2012 Olympics. Sitting humbly on display in glass cases are the various medals won at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Games.
If your child is getting serious about sports in school, a visit to the YOG Gallery would show them the way to aspire to greater sporting excellence.
Even if they are not quite into sports, the gallery is a good place to share with them something tangible about the significance of sports and the universal lessons of persistence, determination and sportsmanship.
If you like the YOG Gallery @ Singapore Sports Museum, you may also want to visit two satellite museums at the Jurong West Sports and Recreation Centre (20 Jurong West Street 93) and Sengkang Sports and Recreation Centre (57 Anchorvale Road). These centres serve to keep the sporting history alive while we await the arrival of the Sports Hub in 2014 and its new Sports Museum within.
Why this Place is Great for a Little Day Out: Lets you get upclose to significant national sporting memorabilia and contains hands-on exhibits for kids.
Who is this Perfect for: Families, children of school-going age who are interested in sports.
You can also visit the Singapore Sports Council website for more on the Sports Museum.
[Editor’s note: The YOG Gallery has closed. It has been replaced by the Singapore Sports Museum at the Singapore Sports Hub.]