Penang set to usher in Year of the Rat with a bang!

A POTPOURRI of exciting events has been lined up for tourists to enjoy during the Chinese New Year festivity in Penang as well as for locals to celebrate them with family and friends.

Ten main events will be organised by various parties to usher in the Year of the Rat with the state government working hand in hand to feature Penang at its best.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow welcomes all Penangites to the Chief Minister of Penang Chinese New Year Open House which would be held at Setia SPICE Arena on Jan 26 from 2pm to 4pm.

A short video of the upcoming events, from awe-inspiring hot air balloons to colourful display of lights, as well as amazing cultural traditions and performances, was also shown to the media.

Penang Global Tourism chief executive officer Ooi Chok Yan said the activities would cater for everyone, young and old.

“From next week, we will have activities every weekend. We encourage family members to spend time together for better bonding and we also want to welcome our foreign friends to savour ‘Experience Penang Year 2020′,” Ooi said.

The Penang CNY programme will kick off with the OBS Chinese New Year Run on Jan 19 at Beach Street.

On the same day, the Kek Lok Si Display of Lights will be switched on until Feb 21.

Among the highlights are the CNY Open House to be hosted by Penang Chinese Chamber of Commerce with Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng at Setia SPICE Convention Centre on Jan 25 (10am-12pm) and the Chief Minister CNY Open House to be hosted by Chow at Setia SPICE Arena on Jan 26 (2pm-4pm).

This will be followed by the 8th Ban Ka Lan Snake Temple CNY Culture Celebration 2020 at Snake Temple on Jan 29 (6pm-12am), Penang Hot Air Balloon Fiesta at Padang Polo on Feb 1 and 2 (7am-9pm), Pai Thee Kong Celebration at the surrounding area of Chew Jetty on Feb 1 (8pm-1.30am) and Penang CNY Celebration (Miao Hui or Temple Festival) at the heritage precinct of George Town on Feb 2 (4pm-11pm).

The celebrations will culminate with the Chap Goh Meh 2020 celebrations on Feb 8 at the Penang Esplanade from 7pm to 11pm and at Bukit Tambun (parade starts from Jetty Bukit Tambun) from 6.30pm to 11pm.

During the CNY period, visitors can also take the opportunity to include in their list of insta-worthy spots, The Path of Penang Hot Air Balloon Fiesta at Sia Boey and Butterworth Art Walk, plus the five container art installations, i.e. Penang Container Art Festival or PICAF, located at Prangin Mall in George Town, Karpal Singh Drive in Jelutong, Kampung Terang in Balik Pulau, Dataran Pemuda Merdeka in Butterworth and Aspen Vision City in Batu Kawan.

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Story by K.H. Ong
Pix by Ahmad Adil Muhamad
Video by Chan Kok Kuan