Moving CNY festival online

The crowd gathering near the main stage area of the Miao Hui (Temple Festival) and Penang Chinese New Year Celebration 2019 decked with beautiful lanterns and pink blossom flowers along King Street, George Town.-CHAN BOON KAI/The Star

THE ‘Miao Hui’, Penang’s popular Chinese New Year (CNY) celebration will go virtual next year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Taking into consideration the views of its members, event organiser Penang Chinese Clan Council (PCCC) has decided to carry out the celebration online.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the Miao Hui, with the theme ‘Permata Budaya’, would be conducted for nine days from the first day of Chinese New Year until the ninth day (Feb 12 to 20 next year).

“The celebration this time around will not involve any physical events, but will create a new experience for viewers, ” he said at a press conference in Komtar on Monday.

Chow said the organiser would use technology during the nine-day period to enable viewers to visit the ancestral halls virtually to learn their cultural heritage without having to be physically present.

“The organiser plans to highlight some 20 clan houses with a three-minute video on each of them, which will be uploaded on social media in stages from Feb 12 next year.

“Miao Hui is now a signature programme and a well-known cultural brand in Penang and the virtual event is made possible due to the combined efforts of the people and the state.”

Chow said the estimated cost of the event is RM300,000. Those who are interested to contribute towards the Miao Hui fund can contact Komtar assemblyman Teh Lai Heng at 016-4459808.

Those who wish to participate or volunteer in the preparation can register through the event’s Facebook page at or call the Miao Hui chief planner Choo Boon Chang at 012-4387796.

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