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By Wendy John
SIBU, Dec 10: The Christmas spirit is in the air as far as the town square here is concerned amidst flashing, colourful lights decorating the entries of this year’s Christmas Tree Decoration contest.
There are eight entries from secondary schools and colleges and four from churches on display until the Dec 31 Countdown event here, when the winners would be announced.
The decorated six-metre tall Christmas trees will add merriment to the Christmas parade scheduled for this Saturday (Dec 14) at the town square which is expected to see the participcation of 10,000 people from various churches.
The contest was introduced by Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) in 2010 and since then it had been a star attraction in Sibu every Christmas season.
Organising chairperson for this year’s contest, Councillor Anna Lau together with Sarawak Chinese Annual Conference president Reverend Dr Tie King Tai performed the lighting-up of the trees on Monday night (Dec 9). This was followed by the first round of judging.
The second and final round of judging is on Dec 30.
Speaking to reporters, Lau said there was no specific theme for this year’s contest.
“We are allowing the participants to choose their own theme according to their entry.”
She said despite the short notice, the 12 participants managed to get their entries done in one week’s time, just before the lighting-up ceremony.
“Judging is based on the decoration of the tree, and the durability and stability of the tree whether they are able to withstand rain, strong
wind and sunlight for the duration of the contest,” she said.
She added that some of the trees were decorated with recycled materials such as plastic bottles, which the council welcomed.
Meanwhile University College of Technology Sarawak (UCTS) lecturer Mohd Yusrizal said his university is taking part in the contest so as to expose its students to community projects.
“By getting the students involved in this contest, we are also teaching them the importance of having patience when doing projects. We also want them to have teamwork and to be able to work according to the deadline,” said Yusrizal who is a lecturer in the achictectural programme.
Altogether, 16 UCTS students from four faculties — engineering, business management, built environment, and computing and multimedia — teamed up for the contest. It took them two to three weeks to conceptualise and design their entry, and two days to install it.
As for the theme of their entry, fellow UCTS lecturer, Timorthy Maurice said it was based on a verse of the Bible.
“Hope is our theme. First there is family, then love, peace, joy and hope which are the core values,’ he said. — DayakDaily