A KOI fish made of coloured paper, a moon made from a kitchen towel and paper spring blossoms were among the eye-catching elements at a giant lantern competition in George Town.
Nine teams from various primary schools around the city brought their own take to the competition organised by the Penang Chinese Town Hall.
As creativity and eco-friendly elements were some of the competition’s requirements, the pupils turned to pipes, paper, plastic, towels and other recyclable or reusable items to create their lanterns.
The tail end of the two-hour competition saw some calmly putting finishing touches while others frantically applied glue to attach various decorative features and tassels.
Some of the children held up tiny battery-operated fans to quickly dry the glue while others were seen stringing fairy lights, securing the structure with glitter tape and checking the sturdiness of their lantern.
Some teams cheered when they were able to complete their creations on time.
SJK(C) Kong Min Pusat was later crowned the winner.
Assistant headmistress Kang Pei Voon said they were a last- minute entrant to the competition.
“We decided to join the contest on the last day of registration. We previously took part in a Go Green project and had plenty of leftover recyclable materials,” she said.
“Plastic bottles were used to make the lights and flower petals for the lantern. We used a kitchen towel to make the moon that we placed on top of the lantern while paper was used for its body.
“Inside the moon, we created a scene from folklore associated with the festival, including that of Chang’e.”
Kang said it took a week to prepare required materials.
“A total of 10 pupils and two teachers were involved in the project. Some parents later joined us as we needed help with the lighting.
“We reached out to pupils for volunteers. We made sure we got those of different ages as the younger ones offered cute and fun ideas while the older ones were good with the crafting.”
Kang said the team expected to win as they were confident about their work.
“Our materials were all recyclable items.”
The team walked away with RM200, a certificate and a trophy.
Second place went to SJK(C) Sum Sun which won RM150 while SJK(C) Sin Kang came in third to receive RM100.
Competition manager Antony Choy said a basic 1.2m-high steel structure was provided as base for the lantern structure while the rest was up to contestants.
“The entries were judged based on their theme (30%), eco-friendly elements (20%), creativity (30%) and the overall presentation of the lantern (20%).
“Each team was allowed 10 to 15 participants,” he said.
Choy said the competition was a yearly event as part of their Mid-Autumn Festival celebrations.
The event included other fun activities for the public such as paper lantern-making sessions, mooncake tasting, traditional games, food trucks, Zumba session and various traditional performances.
Guest of honour Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow gave away prizes to the winners.