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FREE Kid-friendly Activities at Singapore Heritage Festival 2019

A traditional Peranakan wedding procession at the Singapore Heritage Festival's Armenian Street Party. Image courtesy of Singapore Heritage Festival 2019
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Cartoon drawing, tasting Malay food, bus theatre, farm visits and catching frogs – it’s all happening for kids at Singapore Heritage Festival 2019

Singapore Heritage Festival (SHF) is back for the 16th time from 15 March to 7 April 2019, with a special Singapore Bicentennial edition to discover the island’s 700-year-old history and explore different neighbourhoods (Bedok, Kranji, Jurong, and Telok Blangah). There are plenty of kid-friendly events to catch – most of them for FREE! From cartoon drawing workshops, to hearing about hawker culture in song, tasting Malay food, theatre on a bus, visiting Kranji farms, feeding goats, storytelling and catching frogs! This kid-friendly SHF itinerary is just the thing to fill your school holidays calendar – hurray!

      Read more: Free Things to do with Kids this March School Holidays

Kid-friendly Activities at Singapore Heritage Festival 2019
Kid-friendly Activities & Cultural performances (Image credit: Singapore Heritage Festival)

Singapore Heritage Festival 2019: Best Activities for Kids

Rentak Budaya 2019 – Akulah Melayu (I am Malay)

Little and big kids will be delighted with the range of performances and cultural activities presented by youths from various institutions. As part of Singapore’s bicentennial commemoration, the performances draw inspiration from 200 years of our history, achievements and aspirations. Young ones will get the chance to experience a slice of Malay heritage; discover their languages and traditions; witness their martial prowess and sample their delicious food.

Where: Malay Heritage Centre, 85 Sultan Gate, Singapore 198501
When: 16 March from 10am – 10pm
How much: FREE!

Kid-friendly events at Singapore Heritage Festival
Theatre on a Bus for teens and older kids  (Image credit: Singapore Heritage Festival)

Buses and Roads: A bus theatre experience

What kid doesn’t love a trip on the bus? This is a bus trip with a difference though. Hop on in the heart of the Civic District, and meet four different characters from Singapore in the 70s in this theatrical sketch (better for older kids). Through funny, entertaining and memorable stories, travel back to Singapore’s past where life was much simpler, buses were non-air conditioned and people interacted with others for meaningful moments.

Where: Meet at Level 2 Glass Atrium at National Museum of Singapore, 93 Stamford Road, Singapore 178897
When: 16, 17, 23, 24, 30, 31 March; and 6 and 7 April 2019 at 1.30pm – 2.30pm; 3.30pm – 4.30pm; 5.30pm – 6.30pm
How much:$10/pax, registration required here.

Nam Hwa Opera for kids at SHF
Nam Hwa Opera for kids at SHF 2019 (Image credit: Nam Hwa Opera Facebook)

1. Exploring Bedok Neighbourhood: 22- 24 March

Balik Kampung’ Teochew Opera Performance

Have your kids seen any Chinese Opera? Chinese Opera performances to mark special occasions were a common sight at outdoor stages. Join Nam Hwa Opera and the Nam Hwa Teochew Music Ensemble for ‘Balik Kampung’ and a peek into bygone kampung life —perfect for the whole family!

Bedok Town Square, 208c New Upper Changi Road, Singapore 463208
When: TBC
How much: FREE!

Celebrate our local hawker culture with SHF 2019 (Image: Singapore Heritage Festival Facebook)
Celebrate our local hawker culture with SHF 2019 (Image: Singapore Heritage Festival Facebook)

Makan Dreaming

Want to know how your fave hawker dish made it to the hawker centre? Makan Dreaming is a musical extravaganza, that looks at hawker culture in Singapore. Kids can meet a fantastic mix of characters, like Kong, the early immigrant who set up his stall by the Singapore river in the 1960s, Rajesh Raj, the cook behind those colourful, syrupy ice balls that you love, Alice the town cleansing superintendent, with her dancing cleaners, and May Fang, a fourth generation hawker carrying on the tradition with her family’s recipe. Sing along, dance along and celebrate everything we love about hawker centres and hawker food. You’ll never look at a bowl of chicken rice without remembering this wonderful story again.

Where: Bedok Town Square
When: 22 to 24 March at 2pm; 4pm; 6pm; 7.30pm
How much: FREE!

2. Exploring Telok Blangah Neighbourhood: 29 – 31 March

Kid-friendly events at Singapore Heritage Festival
Kid-friendly events and interactive theatre  (Image credit: Singapore Heritage Festival)

A Black-and-White Voyage

Step into this beautiful black-and-white colonial bungalow on Mount Faber, and watch four stories from the past come to life. Kids will meet (fictitious) characters who will tell tales about the beginnings of Telok Blangah, the true story of Temenggong Road, the history of Mount Faber, and the origins of black-and-white bungalows.

Where: 18 Temenggong Rd, (meeting point for Shuttle Bus: Harbourfront Centre (Taxi stand outside Harry’s Harbourfront)
When: Shuttle Bus Timings: 29 March | 7.30pm; 30 and 31 March | 10.30am,1.30pm, 4.30pm
Performance: 29 March | 8pm – 9pm; 30 and 31 March | 11am – 12pm; 2pm – 3pm; 5pm – 6pm
How much: $15/pax, registration required.

Discovering Telok Blangah: A Voyage Through Time (library@harbourfront)

Temasek was the most prominent settlement in pre-colonial Singapore, but did you know that at least one more settlement existed before the British arrived in 1819? In this exhibition, kids can take a voyage through time as the extraordinary stories of Singapore’s early melting pot, Telok Blangah, are recounted.

Where: Library@Harbourfront, 1 Harbourfront Walk, #03-05 VivoCity, Singapore 098585.
When: 25 to 31 March from 11am – 9pm
How much: FREE!

3. Exploring Kranji Neighbourhood: 6 – 7 April


Do your kids know where their food comes from? Take them on FOODPASS, a food trail that covers 15 local farms in and out of Kranji Countryside. Kids will get to understand where their food is grown and experience the more rustic local heritage farms as well as get an insight into high tech farm factories right in the heart of Orchard Road. A great one for older kids!

Where: Kranji Countryside
When:6 and 7 April from 10am to 5pm
How much: FREE!

        Read more: Sassy Mama’s Top 5 Organic Farms in Singapore

kid friendly farm hay diaries
Meet the goats at Hay Dairies part of Singapore Heritage Festival events

     Read more: MOO! Kid-Friendly Farms in Singapore

Hay Dairies

Animal lovers this one is for you! Take the little ones to meet the goats at Hay Dairies. Learn about what it takes to run a Singaporean goat farm and witness a ‘live’ goat milking session from 9.00am to 10.30am. At $5 per packet, you also get to feed the goats and shop for goat-based products!

Where: 3 Lim Chu Kang Lane 4, Singapore 718898
When:6 and 7 April from 9am – 4pm
How much: FREE!

Catch a Frog! (Image credit: Jurong Frog Farm Facebook)
Catch a Frog! (Image credit: Jurong Frog Farm Facebook)

Jurong Frog Farm: Catch a Frog!

Kids get excited! Here you’ll be able to spend a whole day with these little green creatures. From learning about baby frogs – tadpoles (and getting a chance to catch them with your own nets) to feeding frogs and seeing if you are quick enough to catch one with your hands! If you are brave you can also eat frog while you are here – there’s Buttermilk Cajun frog meat and Crocodile skewers on the menu! Gumboots and nets will be provided.

Where: Jurong Frog Farm, 51 Lim Chu Kang Lane (Plot 56), Singapore 718864
When: 6 and 7 April | 9am – 5.30pm
How much: Tour FREE. $6/pax for catching. Extra $2/box of feed.

Other Programmes

Make Your Own Badge: Icons of Balestier

Calling all older kids (8 years and above)! Here’s your chance to join illustrators from the Lianhe Zaobao Student Correspondents Club and design your own button badge! Decorate your badge with different occupational symbols of Balestier, and learn more about life in the past.

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road, Singapore 327874
When: 23 and 24 March | 10am – 5pm
How much: Free admission. Best suited for children 8 years and above.

Tiger Cartoon Drawing Workshop

Shhh beware the tiger! Once upon a time, wild tigers roamed Balestier, and it was common for residents to find tiger tracks outside their houses. While you won’t see a real one in Singapore now, kids can create their own tiger cartoon comic strip and pay tribute to Baletier’s wild past in this workshop led by local cartoonist Winsun!

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road, Singapore 327874
When: 23 March | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
How much: FREE!

Storytelling, cartoon workshops at Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, Singapore Heritage Festival (Image: Pexels)

Stories for Children: Wu Song Fights a Tiger

Are you ready for storytime? Local authors will read traditional fables, such as the tale “Wu Song Fights a Tiger” from the Chinese Classic “Water Margin” for some interactive storytelling fun.

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road, Singapore 327874
When: 24 March from 2pm – 5pm
How much: FREE!

“NiuBiZi” Cartoon Drawing Workshop

Another good one for older kids (8 years and above). NiuBiZi” is an iconic cartoon character created by renowned artist and scholar Huang Yao in the 1930s, and was used in satirical portrayals of social and political issues back in the day. Learn how to draw “NiuBiZi” in this workshop led by local illustrator Anngee Neo!

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road, Singapore 327874
When: 24 March | 10.30am – 1.30pm
How much: FREE!

Children’s World @ SYSNMH: A Glimpse of Balestier

Learn about the history and development of local Chinese Cartoons between the late 1800s and 1950s with the volunteer guides as they take you through the memorial hall’s special exhibition Between the Lines – The Chinese Cartoon Revolution!

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road, Singapore 327874. Meeting Point: Visitor Services Centre
When: 24 March from 2pm – 5pm
How much: FREE!

And that’s a wrap folks. Still looking for more fun inspo for the kids over the hols?

Read more:

MOO! Kid-Friendly Farms in Singapore
Free Things to do with Kids this March School Holidays
Your Last Chance to Visit the Peranakan and Singapore Philatelic Museums Before They Close for Renovation!

Lead image courtesy of Singapore Heritage Festival 2019

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