Classic tale comes alive at northern mall

Mall visitors checking out the replica red propeller airplane at the heart of the Le Petit Prince display.

Weekend craft workshops among activities honouring works of French author, encourage reading in Seberang Prai

EXPLORE a world of wonder, imagination and meaningful life lessons with the “Le Petit Prince” campaign at Sunway Carnival Mall in Penang.

Happening at the main atrium until June 30, it brings to life some of the extraordinary adventures and profound messages found in Frenchman Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s timeless tale.

First published in 1943, Le Petit Prince follows a young prince from the fictitious asteroid B612 who visits various planets, including Earth.

Despite being a children’s book, it addresses some grown-up themes like love, friendship, loneliness, loss, human nature and the search for meaning in life.

It has since sold over 140 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 505 different languages and dialects, making it one of the best-selling publications of all time.

At the event, shoppers could enter through a doorway designed like a giant book, to find displays like the Rose Garden Tunnel filled with thought-provoking excerpts from the novel.

Gooi: Creativity and imagination built through books can be growth catalysts.Gooi: Creativity and imagination built through books can be growth catalysts.

Be sure to snap photos with the red propeller airplane that “crash landed” at the heart of the display, or the Star Gaze Dark Room filled with glowing planets and a giant rose.

There is also a Glamping Corner where visitors could relax and read books in various languages with their little ones.

Accompanying this is an augmented reality zone, where a quick scan of a QR code would bring parts of the story to life.

Speaking at the launch of the event, mall general manager Chai Wen Yew said malls should be more than just places for shopping.

He said it could be a space for people to gather, create memories and experience something meaningful together.

The first Le Petit Prince event in Malaysia epitomised that belief, he added.

“This universally loved, literary masterpiece transcends generations as its profound themes resonate with readers of all ages.

“It reminds us of seeing with the heart and valuing what is truly important.

Chai: The story’s profound themes resonate with readers of all ages.Chai: The story’s profound themes resonate with readers of all ages.

“We hope visitors of all ages find these themes just as relevant to their own lives today.

“By bringing the world of Le Petit Prince to life, we also want to foster greater appreciation of literature and encourage a culture of reading among Malaysians,” Chai added.

State youth, sports and health committee chairman Daniel Gooi Zi Sen said the event aligned with the government’s objective of nurturing a well-rounded, educated and culturally-rich society.

“We believe in the power of creativity and imagination as catalysts for personal and community growth.

“Not only does it spark the imaginations of our youth and encourage them to explore their potential, it also allows families to share a collective experience and strengthen togetherness.

“Such simple yet profound aspects of life are what bring true happiness and fulfilment,” Gooi said before touring the area with invited guests.

This included Hong Kong illustrator Steven Choi, the first Asian who had been officially authorised to illustrate Le Petit Prince books.

There would also a special merchandise area where various Le Petit Prince treasures – from pop-up books to gifts and figurines in blind boxes – are available as keepsakes.

A series of fun workshops have also been lined up for children aged four to 12 on June 22-23 and June 29-30 weekends.

DIY bookmark making sessions are on at 2pm and 6pm, while DIY airplanes are scheduled for 4pm, on all four days.

Participation is free, but spots are limited and available on a first-come-first-served basis.

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