Uniting M’sians with common tie

  • Metro News
  • Monday, 21 Sep 2020

Four women donning their sarong in style at the River of Life site in Kuala Lumpur.

THE annual cultural public flash mob, Keretapi Sarong, once again livened up Malaysia Day with its sixth instalment, known this year as Hari Sarong 2020.

With sarong as its fundamental element as a cultural item shared across races, the programme continued to advocate unity, usage of public transport and carbon emission reduction via crowd participation, while adhering to the movement control order.

Participants donned their sarong in style while commuting on Kuala Lumpur’s integrated train network.

While the signature aspects of Keretapi Sarong had to be compromised because of Covid-19, Hari Sarong 2020 levelled up with a few virtual events such as #SarongParade20, an online sketch in partnership with KL Sketch Nation, “Sarong Hunt”, “Sarong Stories” and “Sarong TikTok Challenge”.

Organised by Locco (short for Local Companion), they created customised Sarong Hunt checklists according to towns and cities across the country. Some of the cities which participated were Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh, Kota Kinabalu, Bandar Melaka and George Town.

To qualify for the contest, participants had to complete at least eight out of 15 challenges on the checklist and tag their entries on Locco’s social media platforms with the hashtag #HariSarong20 during Malaysia Day.

Winners were announced on the same day via the Hari Sarong Live show on Locco’s Facebook page.

Hari Sarong 2020 also captured the interest of multiple organisations. The Linc and Cherita hosted “Kelas Joget Kita” on Malaysia Day itself with limited spots for cultural enthusiasts to learn either Joget Melayu or Kelabit Dance by Mupun Tauh.

On top of that, Hotel Sisi Seni also organised a few events in conjunction with Hari Sarong 2020 such as “Joget Lambak”, a cello performance, traditional games and food vendors throughout that day. For Hari Sarong 2020 itself, the hotel also offered a 16% discount for guests who checked-in while donning the sarong in their own styles.

Keretapi Sarong co-director and Locco content strategist Shamsul Bahrin Zainuzzaman was stoked by Malaysians’ encouraging participation despite having to adhere to the Covid-19 SOP.

“The spirit to celebrate Malaysia Day lives on among Keretapi Sarong’s loyal supporters.

“This tough time has brought us together even more, while providing more opportunities for the event to be more inclusive, especially for non-Klang Valley residents. Each state has its own uniqueness to showcase, and we were thrilled to see more participation across the country this time.”

He thanked Prasarana whom he said had been Keretapi Sarong’s main supporter for the past few years and again this year.

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