Friday, 16 May 2014

National Day Parade to celebrate Singaporeans with heart

By Olivia Siong, Channel NewsAsia, 14 May 2014

"Our People, Our Home" will be the theme of this year's National Day Parade, as Singapore celebrates its 49th birthday in August.

Sharing the inspiration behind the theme, the parade's executive committee said NDP 2014 will celebrate people who have the will to stand up for Singapore's independence and who care for each other.

The committee also hopes to get Singaporeans involved in the celebrations through a series of activities in the lead up to and during the NDP.

Unveiling this year's NDP theme on Wednesday, the executive committee shared there will be no theme song this time round.

Instead, it will rely on familiar favourites to rouse the crowd.

Colonel Wong Yu Han, chairman of the NDP 2014 Executive Committee, said: "Songs like 'Stand Up for Singapore', 'Count on me Singapore', 'Home' -- those songs that we grow up singing together do mean a lot to us. That's what we want to do for this year, to bring (them) back again and tie (them) in with our theme, ‘Our People, Our Home.’"

The parade will be held at The Float @ Marina Bay with the show's segment directed by Dick Lee.

It is not known yet whether this will be the last year the NDP will be held at the venue. Next year's parade will be held at the Padang.

Work is still being done to transform the floating platform for this year's National Day Parade.

Come August 9, it will hold the largest number of non-uniform contingents ever accommodated on the platform during the parade and ceremony segment.

The parade segment will also feature moments called "Heartbeats", where those who have helped build Singapore in the past and present will be recognised.

Colonel Wong said: "We have come to this theme really as a result from just conversing with our people, and finding out the things that matter most to our people. We find that this spirit of independence and care for each other, this care that we take to build our home together comes very strongly to us and that's how we came to the theme."

This year's parade is also about getting more Singaporeans involved.

One such activity is the new "Junior Red Lions" initiative, which will give 18 Primary 4 and 5 students a chance to train for a day with the Singapore Armed Forces Red Lions parachuting team at iFly Singapore, as well as salute the crowd with them on stage on August 9.

Another activity is the Big Hearted Family Awards contest, where Singaporeans can share stories of how people they know have made the Republic a better home.

Mini Singapore flags for vehicles will also be made available.

There is also a mobile app for Singaporeans to personalise the NDP logo and share pictures and their birthday wishes for Singapore.

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