Despite new norms, Malaysia Day Kite Festival still lively

Despite new norms, Malaysia Day Kite Festival still lively

MELAKA, Sept 20 -- The Kite Festival held here today in conjunction with Malaysia Day while complying with the new norms following the COVID-19 pandemic remained lively despite the attendance of only local participants and tourists.

State Tourism, Heritage and Culture Committee chairman, Datuk Muhammad Jailani Khamis said the festival, which was in its 13th year, received encouraging response although there was no international participation due to implementation of the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO).

''This annual programme is one of the efforts to attract and restore the confidence of tourists, especially domestic tourists, to visit the state, as well as promote kite flying, a traditional game that is increasingly forgotten among the younger generation, especially given the availability of sophisticated gadgets now.

''Having a festival like this brings back the glory and memories of this traditional game to the community,'' he told reporters after officiating at the 2020 Malaysia Day Kite Festival in Pulau Melaka, here, today.

The 9 am-5 pm event involved 50 participants from all over the country showcasing various types, sizes, colours and shapes of kites.

Meanwhile, Muhammad Jailani said the state government intended to make the state a kite hub in an effort to inculcate the art of kite making involving kite makers from all over Malaysia.

“The implementation is still in the presentation process and the hub is expected to be the Menara Taming Sari area, Bandar Hilir. It will showcase local products, besides kites from foreign countries including China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Australia and Indonesia which have been involved in the festival,” he added.

Danny Lau, 55, from Kuala Lumpur, participated in the event here for the first time here although he had taken part in kite festivals in other parts of the country and in other countries too.

Lau whose hobby has been playing kite since his teens, is happy to be involved in this outdoor activity which is not only beneficial but also allows him to spend time with his family.

“Today’s youths are engrossed in video games on their smart phones but for me, to be able to play outdoors is healthier as I am able to perspire too,” he said.

As for 48-year-old Chan Meng Lian, although he has spent thousands of ringgit on buying giant-sized kites, this recreational activity of seeing his kite fly in the air gives him joy and satisfaction.