National Day Singapore

Events to celebrate Singapore’s independence with

09 August, 2010 by

9th of August is the day that Singapore celebrates its independence. Of course not being just a simple public holiday, devoted Singaporeans celebrate the day of independence via attending the National Day Parade (though only applicable to the lucky few who manage to get the tickets through a random allocation). Fortunately for the rest of us who are not as lucky, we still have several means to celebrate, including watching the event on TV in the comfort of home.

So what are the events you can catch when Singapore celebrates its national day? There is of course the main event, the National Day Parade (NDP) but other than that there’s also the Singapore Fireworks Celebration and last but not least, the National Day Rally. I’ll provide a little information and some specifics separately in the article below.

A panoramic view of the previous years NDP on the now defunct National Stadium.

National Day Parade:
The National Day Parade is a parade held yearly in commemoration of Singapore’s independence. Traditionally, it took place at the Padang. But was moved to the Singapore National Stadium in 1986. Still every 5 years, the parade is held at the Padang instead. Since 2007 though, it’s been held at Marina Bay while the National Stadium undergoes major refurbishment.

Previous years NDP held at the Marina Bay Floating Platform, or The Float@Marina Bay.

Highlights of the National Day Parade include the Parade and Ceremonies, Marchpast, Mobile Column, Flypast and the show segments.

The Parade and Ceremonies is basically a huge form-up of contingents that consist of the Singapore Armed Forces, Singapore Police Force, Singapore Civil Defense Force, representatives of the ministries, unions, businesses and students from uniformed groups. The parade group performs a presidential salute upon the arrival of the president (while the National Anthem is played).

Next, the parade commander will request that the president inspects the parade. A presidential 21-gun salute is given to the president. After the inspection ends, the president returns to the podium and the contingents fire another volley of salutes.

The Marchpast commences once the Parade and Ceremonies has reached its end. It was first introduced in 2009, when the contingents marched out of the parade grounds and into the CBD (Central Business District) area before ending at the F1 Pit Building. This year, the Marchpast returns, but round the Marina Bay area.

The Mobile Column is a parade of vehicles acquired by the local military and defense forces. Like the act of holding the NDP at the Padang, the Mobile Column is only displayed once every 5 years, with this year being one of them.

The Flypast is the aerial counterpart to the Mobile Column by the Singapore Air Force. Unlike the Mobile Column though, the Flypast is a yearly staple.

In the last show segments that lead up to the finale, the year’s theme song is performed before ending with a bang a display of fireworks.

This year, the fireworks will be launched from 9 different locations:

– The Padang
– City Hall
– Esplanade Theater
– Marina Bay
– Suntec City
– Pan Pacific Hotel
– Ritz Carlton Millenia Hotel
– UOB Plaza
– Maybank Tower

Pre-NDP preparations at the Padang.

Singapore Fireworks Celebration:
The Singapore Fireworks Celebration is a more recent event held by the Singapore Tourism Board to celebrate National Day with. Each year around the days surrounding National Day, fireworks from different countries are set off at the Marina Bay area. The event will take place on the 22nd and 23rd of August this year as part of the post National Day celebrations.

A beautiful shot of the previous years fireworks, by Dan Walsh.

National Day Rally:
Last but not least is an annual address from the Prime Minister to the rest of Singapore. The National Day Rally is delivered in the evening on the second Sunday after National Day.

A National Day Rally delivered by the current Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr Lee Hsien Loong.

Addicted to film, Yan shoots with a black Nikon Fm3a. For special occasions, Yan shoots with a Mamiya Sekor TLR.