A Rattling Good Time

SAFRA ushered in the Year of the Rat with family-friendly celebrations at five clubs.

By Edmund Wee      9 March 2020

Thousands of NSmen and their families got a head start to the Lunar New Year celebrations when they participated in exciting programmes and activities at various SAFRA clubs across the island.

Headlining the festivities at SAFRA Tampines was an inaugural and unique LED War Drum performance. Held at the Atrium and Theatrette on 4 Jan, the event was attended by over 1,000 people, who soaked up the festivities, took pictures with a God of Fortune mascot, and savoured traditional sweets such as kueh tutu and dragon’s beard candy.

Guests were spotted queuing to get their hands on fortune couplets by 70-year-old Uncle Jimmy at SAFRA Toa Payoh.

Another highlight was the cherry blossom craft workshop, with the Lunar New Year theme of welcoming new beginnings.

The celebrations were replete with auspiciousness – over 25 people who were anxious to know of their fortunes in the upcoming rat zodiac cycle sat eager-eyed at the comprehensive zodiac talk at SAFRA Jurong.

One of the biggest turnouts for this year’s celebrations was at SAFRA Toa Payoh on 11 Jan. Life-sized balloon mascots ushered in over 4,200 people – Members and their guests – who attended the celebrations in the afternoon.

Commemorating the occasion was a mass lo hei, followed by a lively lion and dragon dance performance. Of the myriad family-oriented programmes, particularly popular was the fortune couplet demonstration written by a calligraphy hobbyist-cum-volunteer, fondly known as Uncle Jimmy, at SAFRA Running Club.

In keeping with the festive mood, the Nanyang Philharmonic Chinese Orchestra serenaded guests with cultural music. The celebrations, which were also synonymous with festive feasting, also saw crowds making a beeline for complimentary Golden Huat popcorn, candy floss, muah chee and kachang puteh at food booths.

There were also other fringe activities for NSMen and their families, including a hastag printing photo booth, and a storytelling and crafts workshop by Erudite Stories.


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