A Reunion of Former Colleagues
A group of former colleagues, some in their 70s, have been gathering for their annual CNY reunion dinners for the past 35 years. Although the company which they were working in closed down some time ago with some members even leaving before that, spokesperson Tracy Liew always made it a point to organise these reunions without fail every year.
“In spite of all these years, the bond between us is still very close and strong although we are now in different companies and places. We are planning to meet at least twice or more a year if possible,” lamented Tracy. “Sadly, we have lost two members through the years but we intend to add more to the group as time goes on, we never know when we will meet again,” she added.
Reunion Dinner in PCSH
Perak Community Specialist Hospital (PCSH) prepared a special ‘Reunion Dinner’ for their patients who were not able to enjoy a reunion dinner with family. One of them was Mr Wong Yow Yeong.
“The soup tastes like home cooking even though it is prepared the halal way,” said a delighted Mr Wong.
Many were pleasantly surprised to receive their special meal of lotus soup with additional servings of chicken, fish and vegetable dishes; with mandarin oranges and a special greeting card bearing New Year wishes from the Management and staff.
PCSH Chief Executive Officer Mr Nicholas Chan added: “We wanted to make the place livelier and at the same time bring some Chinese New Year cheer to the patients – a touch of home away from home despite them being warded at the hospital.”
Heritage Appreciation and Prosperity Reunion Dinner at Tin Alley
Kepayang state assemblyman, Dr Ko Chung Sen who was the guest of honour led by Mr Tan Kai Lek and Mr Leong Hing Wah, organisers of the event and other guests, started the night’s programme with a drum call and ‘lou sang’ dish.
A total of 188 tables, signifying “prosperity”, surrounding Lorong Bijeh Timah, Market Lane and a stretch of Jalan Bijeh Timah were prepared for the event. More than 1000 Ipohites were treated to a multicultural show and prosperity dinner that night.
DYMM Raja Permaisuri Perak, Tuanku Zara Salim, paid a visit to the Pertubuhan Pengurusan Pusat Jagaan 1 Malaysia on January 20. Her royal highness spent about an hour visiting the home accompanied by Mr Choong Kam Hong, the Chairman of PPPJ1M, Datin Seri Dr Nomee Ashikin Mohammed Radzi, Puan Sri Dato’ Sandra Lee and Ms Wong May Ing. HRH presented CNY ang pows to the children before she bid them farewell.
A troupe of Lion Dancers came a-calling to the home on February 1 and thrilled the children with their performance. An ang pow was given to each of the 35 children present at the home after the dance.
Sama-sama Gong Xi
The Perak State Government organised a Sama-sama Gong Xi Chinese New Year celebration on Thursday, February 6 at Eco Park, Bandar Seri Botani to welcome the Year of the Rat.
Present at the event were Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah, Raja Permaisuri Perak, Tuanku Zara Salim, Perak Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu, his wife, Datin Seri Nomee Ashikin Mohammed Radzi and Executive Councillor for Tourism, Arts and Culture Tan Kar Hing and other dignitaries.
Their royal highnesses were welcomed to the event with a lion dance and were entertained to a Chinese opera, Peacock Dance and Fan dance. This event at the Eco Park started as early as 6pm and continued throughout the night with Chinese calligraphy, henna art painting, pottery making and other Chinese cultural activities being held in various parts of the park. Thousands were enthralled by the night’s festivities.
Sharing the Joy
Perak Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCCI) celebrated the Chinese New Year together with the underprivileged on the morning of Sunday, January 26 at the ballroom of WEIL Hotel.
“PCCCI has decided to take up the project of building a permanent arch at Jalan Mustapha Al-Bakri with an estimated budget of RM500,000. We will invite professional designers, engineers and architects to participate and tender for the construction as soon as possible. Meanwhile, we will also initiate fundraising events to call on Perakeans especially Ipohites to come forward to raise the RM500,000 needed,” Dato’ Liew Sew Yee, President of PCCCI explained.
“The objective of building this arch is to signify the struggles of the Chinese back in the last 200 years and their contribution to nation-building. We would like to make this arch the new landmark for Ipoh New Town,” he added.
With Nga Kor Ming, Deputy Speaker of the Dewan Rakyat as the guest of honour, present were Dr Lee Boon Chye, the Deputy Minister of Health; Dr Abdul Aziz Bari, Executive Councillor for Education, Science, Environment, Green Technology and Information; Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham, Perak Legislative Assembly Speaker; Dato’ Lim Kok Cheong, Life Honorary President of PCCCI; Tan Sri Lee Oi Hian, Honorary President of PCCCI; Haji Amirudin Tan Sri Tajudin, Deputy President of Perak Malay Chamber of Commerce and Industry; and Ravi Sanker Balasubramaniam, President of Perak Indian Chamber of Commerce.
Chap Goh Meh at Church of St Michael
Have you ever wondered how Chap Goh Meh would be celebrated in a church?
Church of St Michael along 24 Church Road celebrated Chap Goh Meh in advance on Friday evening, 7 February.
Father Anthony Liew, Parish Priest of the Church of St Michael expressed, “The Catholic religion is universal. Though we’re Catholic, we are also Chinese. That’s why we still celebrate Chinese cultural celebrations.”
“Today, we come together as one family for this Chap Goh Meh celebration in the house of the Lord (the church) to have our union meal and fellowship. The organising team of this celebration is the Chinese Apostolate of our church, which promotes Chinese cultural celebrations, including Mid-Autumn Festival, Dumpling Festival and more, in our church,” Father Anthony explained.
The event was filled with activities, games and performances, such as scooping up mandarin oranges from a water tub, lucky draws with hampers, ang pows, and more as prizes, Chinese orchestra performances, performances about the origin of Chinese New Year and dances.
Kok Chee Kong, Vice President of the Chinese Apostolate expressed, “This year’s Chap Goh Meh is special for us as we invite non-members of our church to come to get to know our church and Catholic religion as well as participate in our activities.”
“Every mandarin orange in the water tub has the name of one of the 17 groups of our church as well as the contact number. Therefore, if they are interested in getting to know us, they can contact us via the phone number on the mandarin orange,” Kok elaborated.
“It is a fresh experience for me,” Chichun Chang, a 31-year-old Taiwanese who was brought to the event by her friend, enthused.
“The Chap Goh Meh activities here are very similar to how we celebrate Weiya (an annual year-end banquet that is traditionally held before the Lunar New Year in Taiwan) when we will also have lucky draws. In Taiwan, we don’t have the tradition of tossing mandarin oranges, we basically celebrate Yuan Xiao Jie (Lantern Festival which marks the first full moon and 15th day of the first month of the Lunar New Year) by watching lanterns. We will make lots of lanterns with different designs, and there will be huge lantern displays. We’ll also solve riddles,” Chang explained.
“I was invited by my friend to come. As young people, we’ll like to enjoy this event as much as we can as it’s a once in a year kind of thing and of course, we get to meet up with friends as well,” Chin Jing Ru, a 30-year-old non-member of the church told Ipoh Echo.