First-ever Christmas Eve street party to mark 40 years of Orchard Road light-ups

Singapore shopping district will also have three 'Great Christmas Villages' for visitors to revel in the festivities

dreamy clouds at orchard as part of christmas celebrations
Step into a child's dreamland at our Christmas light-up, where cotton candy clouds, festive trees, jingling bells, teddy bears, prancing reindeer, and sweet candy canes come to life!(PHOTO: Orchard Road Business Association)

SINGAPORE — This year will mark the 40th anniversary of the Orchard Road Christmas light-up, and organisers are holding a Christmas Eve street party for the first time to commemorate the occasion.

In a media release issued on Thursday (26 October), the Orchard Road Business Association (ORBA) also revealed that annual event will see three "Great Christmas Villages" offering carnival rides, games and food-and-beverage kiosks for all to enjoy.

President Tharman Shanmugaratnam will be officiating the Light-Up Ceremony at Shaw House Urban Plaza on 16 November to kick off the festivities, which will last until 1 January.

Unveiling the festive delights and whimsical light-up

The Christmas Eve street party will stretch from the Paterson junction of Orchard Road to Bideford junction, and will last from 8pm on 24 December to 12.30am on Christmas Day. Road closures will start from 6pm.

It is a throwback to when Orchard Road hosted the "Swing Singapore" street parties as part of the National Day Celebrations from 1988 to 1991. This new iteration is set to feature DJ and live band performances, Christmas carols, Santa meet-and-greet sessions, food trucks and a countdown to Christmas Day.

Visitors to the Orchard Road light-up can also look forward to three "Great Christmas" villages, which will be located at Shaw House, Ngee Ann City and Plaza Singapura.

The village at Shaw House Urban Plaza will open on 24 November, the Plaza Singapura village on 1 December and the Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza village on 8 December.

As for the Christmas light-up, this year's theme of "A Child’s Dreamscape" aims to transport visitors to a child's dream world with cotton candy clouds, Christmas trees, bells, teddy bears, reindeer and candy canes. Warm LED lights in white, yellow, pink, and turquoise 'clouds' will create a dreamy ambience.

Last year, the light-up drew over four million visitors, and ORBA Chairman Mark Shaw told The Straits Times that he hopes that this year's festivities could bring in around five to six million visitors, comparable to pre-COVID levels.

Shining bright for a cause

The Light-Up Ceremony, organised by ORBA and Community Chest, aims to raise funds for over 100 social service agencies running more than 200 critical social service programmes.

Other attractions include augmented-reality projections on the façade of Hilton Singapore Orchard and the 25 glass panels lining the pedestrian walkway from ION Orchard to Mandarin Gallery. These visual projections will be active from 1 November to 1 January next year.

Music will also play from speakers on 44 lamp posts on both sides of Orchard Road. A countdown clock will also help revellers usher in the festive seasons on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve.

ORBA said it is also committed to reducing its carbon footprint by repurposing energy-efficient LED lights and fixtures. Furthermore, they plan to install solar panels to power the two set pieces in front of the Mandarin Gallery and Plaza Singapura.

The annual Orchard Road holiday light-up tradition, known as "Christmas on A Great Street," will have more engaging activities. (PHOTO: Orchard Road Business Association)

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