Weekender Guide Singapore: Things to Do on Jan. 20-22, 2023
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Weekender Guide SGP: Best Things to See, Do, Eat on Jan. 20-22, 2023

Ahh, another weekend is upon us and you’re looking for cool things to get up to in the city! We’ve saved you the hassle with The Beat Singapore’s rundown of the best places to hit up and things to do this weekend—from blink-and-you'll-miss-it pop-up sights and new restaurant openings, to the hottest activities that you shouldn’t miss. 

To keep your finger on the pulse of the city, follow The Beat Singapore to see what’s best in store for the weekend. 

1. River Hongbao 2023

Get ready to leap forward to a prosperous Year of the Rabbit, as one of the largest annual Chinese New Year festivals in Singapore – River Hongbao – returns in 2023. The Spring Festival celebration will feature giant lanterns, eco-friendly lighting installations, live stage performances, food stalls, and immersive games for the whole family to enjoy together.

The River Hongbao 2023 opening ceremony will take place on Jan. 20 from 8 PM-10 PM. This will be followed by the Chinese New Year’s Eve celebration on Saturday from 10 PM-12 AM. The event will run until Jan. 28, you may check the complete list of programmes here.

There will also be a working committee consisting of 100 volunteers to maintain order and enforce preventive measures amid the ongoing pandemic. For those who prefer attending the festival virtually, you may do so by checking out these live stream shows and events.

When: Jan. 20-21, 6:30 PM (remaining days until Jan. 28, starting at 2:30 PM)

Where: Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Drive

How much: Free

2. Light to Night Festival

The Light to Night Festival, which began on Jan. 6, is also one of the festivities you should not skip this weekend! The festival features an exciting and immersive lineup of 60 multidisciplinary day-to-night showcases from the National Gallery Singapore, The Arts House, Asian Civilisations Museum, and Victoria Concert Hall. 

More than 50 booths at the outdoor Festival Village are present, with opening hours extended until midnight every weekend. The on-site event is free for all, including the programmes, live performances, and other activities. For more information about the Light to Night Festival 2023, click here.

When: Until Jan. 26

Where: Civic District Singapore

How much: Free

3. SSO Gala: Mahler’s Wunderhorn with Hans Graf and Sumi Hwang

For those who fancy classical music and live orchestral performances on a weekend, you may check out Singapore Symphony Orchestra’s upcoming concert.

Together with the national orchestra, South Korean soprano Sumi Hwang and Austrian Music Director Hans Graf will transport audiences to “songs of imagination and poetry” as they will play Mahler’s famous orchestral song setting – “Wunderhorn (The Boy's Magic Horn).”

Parents are required to bring proof of their child’s age when entering the venue, as the show does not permit children below seven years old. Moreover, attendees must be seated 15 minutes before the show begins, while latecomers will be able to enter the venue during appropriate pauses or intermissions.

When: Jan. 20, 7:30 PM

Where: Esplanade Concert Hall, Esplanade Theatres on the Bay 

How much: S$3.420-S$108 via Singapore Symphony Group

4. ‘Pictures in the Mind’ Exhibition

In line with the recent Singapore Art Week, Art Photography Centre DECK presents “Pictures in the Mind,” an exhibition that features “the old, nondescript mall through public contributions, exhibitions by artists at disused retail units in September 2022 (during the 8th biennale Singapore International Photography Festival).”

At the heart of this exhibition are “multi-media heritage” photographs taken by Arts Business Management students at Ngee Ann Polytechnic. The exhibit aims to explore photography and create new ideas from the images by attempting to use space and time associated with memories.

Various artists, including Ang Song Nian, Daniela Monasterios Tan, Ernest Wu and Syahrul Anuar, Lim Zeharn and Lim Zeherng, and Song-Ming Ang, have contributed their works to the exhibition. For more information, visit DECK’s official website.

When: Until Jan. 20, 11AM-7 PM

Where: Peace Centre, 1 Sophia Road

How much: Free

5. Auspicious Lion and Dragon Dance Performance

In traditional Chinese culture, people believe that dragons have the power to control water, rain, and floods, as these represent good luck and strength. Dragon dance performances are a traditional part of the Chinese New Year celebrations. These performances are intended to ward off evil spirits while also attracting good fortune and blessings.

This CNY 2023, celebrate the Year of the Rabbit with the pulsating rhythm of large drums, gongs, and cymbals, alongside colourful lion and dragon dances at the Memorial Hall.

When: Jan. 22, 10AM-11AM

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road

How much: Free

6. God of Fortune Visit

Apart from lion and dragon dance performances, the God of Fortune will also be roaming around the Memorial Hall to give away sweet treats to lucky Singaporeans. Make sure to keep an eye out for the God of Fortune if you want a more prosperous year ahead!

When: Jan. 22, 10 AM-12 PM

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road

How much: Free

7. Lunar New Year Hongbao Giveaway

Let’s go museum hopping this weekend as the Museum Roundtable Lunar New Year Hongbao Campaign is back this 2023.

Supported by the National Heritage Board and Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall (SYSNMH), museum-goers will be given free limited edition SYSNMH hongbaos as they visit 39 participating museums, heritage institutions, and galleries.

Each day, the first 50 fastest bunnies (oops, we meant visitors) will receive a unique set of MR Rabbit Year red packets, but only while stocks last! In case you do not catch any free hongbaos, you can still buy them for S$88 (nett). Each person is limited to purchase one album only during the sales period. To learn more about this campaign, click here.

When: Until Jan. 22, 10 AM-5 PM

Where: Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, 12 Tai Gin Road

How much: Free

8. City Square Mall Singapore Promo

Stocking up on CNY staples and finding new home décor for the Year of the Rabbit? Don’t forget to snap photos or record fun boomerangs with any bunny-themed decor or installations you can find in Singapore’s first eco-mall, City Square Mall.

The cutest photo with a creative Chinese New Year greeting will have a chance to win two pairs of Golden Village Tickets. You may share and post your entry via the comment section. Tip: A photo of a bunny hop has a better chance to take home the prize. Note that terms and conditions apply.

When: Jan. 20, 11:59 PM

Where: City Square Mall, 180 Kitchener Road

How much: Free

9. Lunar New Year with Mini Rex Rabbits

The Mini Rex rabbits at Mandai Wildlife Reserve would want to wish everyone a prosperous “Gong Xi Fa Cai!” as they welcome visitors this weekend until Feb. 5.

The care team at Buddy Barn in Singapore Zoo’s Rainforest KidzWorld will assist guests for an interaction session with these gentle animals. As part of the celebration, animal ambassadors from Singapore Zoo and River Wonders will also be present, including a capybara, a sea lion, a coatimundi, and everyone’s favourite canines from Splash Safari, Rainforest Fights Back, and Animal Friends.

Other treats you may enjoy are the traditional lion dance, delectable macarons, assorted apparel at retail stores, and a meet-and-greet with the God of Fortune mascot. Local residents can save up to 30% off for admission tickets, You can buy here.

When: Jan. 21, 8:30 AM-6 PM

Where: Mandai Wildlife Reserve, 80 Mandai Lake Road

How much: S$38-S$55

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