How youths are celebrating National Day differently this year

With the National Day Parade being livestreamed instead, Aug 9 will have to be spent a little differently.

Winny Wint Htae

Published: 7 August 2020, 11:43 AM

National Day celebrations this year will be unique as it’s the first time we will not have one big show with an audience at Marina Bay or the Padang. Instead, celebrations will be split in two, with the Morning Parade starting at 10.20am and the Evening Show streamed from The Star Vista at 7pm.

With the two-part NDP and social gathering limit of five people in place, the 55th National Day will have to be celebrated differently for people with traditions of celebrating National Day with big gatherings.

Youth.SG spoke to some youths about how they plan to go about with their celebrations for National Day 2020.

Have a drive around Singapore

“My family usually gathers at my house to watch the parade together on TV every year. There’s always lots of food and laughter, and everyone watches the fireworks from the window at the end of the night.

“However, the pandemic has disrupted my National Day celebrations this year as we can’t gather because of COVID-19 and the safe distancing guidelines.

“For this year’s National Day, my dad suggested that we should spend the afternoon driving around our old neighbourhood to visit all our favourite spots like the playground we used to play at when we were young, and eat the chicken rice we loved before we moved to another area.


Singaporeans will not be able to host a big gathering at home to catch the National Day Parade with their friends or extended family members this year. PHOTO CREDIT: PEXELS/KETUT SUBIYANTO


“I think I would probably watch the livestream if I don’t have any plans to go out with friends or family, since it’s more convenient to just stream it online at home instead of going over to someone’s house. I’m also quite interested to see how different this year’s parade will be!” – Christine Chee, 19, student

Skipping the Morning Parade and watching the replay instead

“Usually for National Day, I will head over to my grandmother’s house with my siblings to have dinner and spend time with the maternal side of my family. It would be one of the few times during the year that we get together.

“One of the highlights of going to my grandmother’s house is that we’d be able to watch and hear the streams of fireworks in the distance from her house.

“As we celebrate National Day in the midst of a pandemic, I won’t be able to head over to my grandmother’s house to celebrate. Considering her age, I think it would be better for us to celebrate it from our own homes this year for her safety and ours.


Some are still looking forward to the evening performances this year. PHOTO CREDIT: FACEBOOK/NPEEPS


“For this year, I’ll just watch the night performances at home with my family. Maybe even have a karaoke session with all the NDP songs through the years. I’ll also probably eat local food like kaya toast to feel extra patriotic!” – Ferdeos, 19, student

Keeping to the social gathering limit of five

“It’s a yearly tradition for my family to go to a friend’s house every National Day. We’d watch the Parade together while having dinner, and then catch up by playing some board games during and after the Parade.

“This year, my family and our friends had to decide whether we should meet in the morning or in the evening, which I find quite inconvenient because we wouldn’t be getting the same NDP experience either way. I think I’m most affected in terms of how our traditions are being broken and how we can’t do things the same way anymore.

“Our celebrations have been disrupted this year because our gathering would usually consist of more than 10 people. But with the tightened social gathering measures, we can only have five people and that’s a huge reduction! Our board games won’t be the same anymore, and the overall atmosphere won’t be as lively as before. No gathering, no problem.


Some are planning to video call their friends to watch the livestream together. PHOTO CREDIT: PEXELS/ANNA SHVETS


“I’ll still be following my parents to our friend’s place to watch the second half of National Day while keeping the party size to five people. We’ll probably video-call those who can’t join us because of the social gathering limits.” – Priscilla Lee, 18, student

Missing out on National Day staycations

“My family usually celebrates National Day by booking a hotel room near the Marina Bay floating platform and we have a gathering with my extended family so that we can watch the fireworks together.

This year’s National Day Parade will be a little different – there won’t be any audience due to COVID-19. PHOTO CREDIT: FACEBOOK/NPEEPS


“My favourite parts of the NDP would have to be the fireworks and the air shows. I feel that watching NDP in two parts this year is kind of weird because it has always been one big event every year and it’ll be a different experience this time.

“This year, due to COVID-19, we no longer have plans to book a hotel room and it has always been one of the few times a year that my family has staycations so it’s a little disappointing. There are also elderly people in my family so it’s dangerous for the whole family to go out anyway.

“Instead of having a staycation during National Day, we will just be staying home to watch the broadcast. Two of my cousins will be coming over to have dinner with us and we can celebrate together. I can see the fireworks from my house as well so that’s a plus for me!” – Verlicia Teng, 21, student

While National Day celebrations at home may be different this year, it can still be as enjoyable as any other year.

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