8 Things to Look Forward to During NDP2020 from Your Home (or Void Deck)

Have you ever cooked during a National Day Parade (NDP)?

Image: Tenor

Ok, so maybe you happened to be cooking lunch or dinner during one parade in the past, but has the nation ever cooked with you?

Reader: These questions are really confusing me. 

Well, that’s because this year’s NDP is going to be a little different.

As you know, gathering in large groups is not allowed due to the pesky coronavirus. In fact, gathering in medium-sized groups or even small groups is not allowed.

Only an extra small gathering of five is permissible.

So, how exactly are you supposed to have a National Day Parade if no one can attend it?

Well, you could bring it into each and every home across the country.

According to NDP’s website, this year’s parade will be a “digitalised and immersive experience” with a series of home engagement activities to encourage audience participation throughout the day.

So, what can you look forward to from the comfort of your home (or void deck) for this year’s NDP?

1. Red Lions 

Image: ndp.gov.sg

One of the joys of watching the NDP is seeing several men and women fall from the skies onto the ground at the Padang.

They wear parachutes, of course. The spectacle wouldn’t be as fun to watch otherwise.

The Singapore Armed Forces Parachute Team, also known as the Red Lions, is best known for its free-fall displays during the NDP.

It has quickly become a crowd favourite since its first appearance in 1989. Here’s a video, if you haven’t seen them in action before:

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This year, the lucky residents of Jurong East and Sengkang will be able to catch this spectacle while still wearing their torn pyjamas because the group will be making an appearance in the heartlands for the first time!

Two weeks ago, residents spotted these parachuting daredevils gliding across the skies of Jurong East and Sengkang for a rehearsal.

2. Fly Our Flag

Image: ndp.gov.sgg

Traditionally, you’ll see helicopters flying our country’s flag across the padang, after the flag is raised.

For this year’s NDP, however, the traditional State Flag Flypast will be flown across several heartland locations, as well as the padang.

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The Chinook helicopters, escorted by the AH64 attack helicopters, will bring the flypast a little closer to Singaporeans.

Concurrent flag-raising ceremonies will also take place nationwide, inviting Singaporeans to sing the national anthem from where they are.


3. Roar of Unity

Image: ndp.gov.sg

This year, the F-15SG fighter jets will perform their trademark Roar of Unity over our housing estates, as a tribute to our frontline fighters and essential workers, to symbolise a nation united as one people.

You might be lucky enough to see it from your window. You’ll know it’s coming if your ear drums start bursting.

4. Mobile Column

If for some reason you forgot that National Day falls on 9 August and you saw this on your street, you might think the country was being taken over.

Image: ndp.gov.sg

There’s nothing to fear, of course. This is just the Mobile Column that takes place during every NDP.

This year, the Mobile Column will be returning to the heartlands.


Featuring assets from the SAF and Home Team, these battle tanks will travel across five different routes across various parts of Singapore.

In an effort to bring them closer to residents, they will drive past key community places such as schools and hospitals.

5. NDP-Themed Cooking Activity

Remember how I said the whole nation will be cooking during this year’s NDP? Yeah, I wasn’t joking about that.

As part of a series of home engagement activities to encourage audience participation, residents will be invited to bond with their families and the nation with an NDP-themed cooking activity.

Image: Tenor

Reader: But I don’t even like cooking with my family on regular occasions


But aren’t you interested to find out what an NDP-themed meal means? Is it a Prata shaped like a Merlion? Is it a plate of Nasi Lemak that looks like the Singapore flag?

Reader: Those things sound impossible

Well, there’s only one way to find out, dear reader.

Reader: My interest has been piqued

6. NDP-Themed Workout

Again, we’re not entirely sure what an NDP-themed workout even means, but how many calories have you lost in past parades?

Image: Tenor

Exercise can boost your immune system, which is vital in the time of corona.

On any other day, it’d be easy for you to put off going to the gym because you could simply say, “I’m sure many others are as lazy as I am”.

But with the entire nation working out from the comfort of their homes, declining to exercise would require you to descend to uncharted depths of sloth.

So, put away those five cups of bubble tea, get up from your bed, and get moving!

7. Art & Craft Workshop

Do you have an artsy side?

Image: Tenor

In addition to the NDP-themed workout and cooking activity, viewers will be invited to take part in an art and craft workshop during the part of the parade that’ll be broadcast in the afternoon.

There aren’t too many details available, but this will likely involve drawing and painting, which will be especially fun for the family if you have kids.

8. An Intimate, Meaningful Evening Show

The evening show, which typically features mass productions featuring thousands of performers, will be a more intimate affair this year.

According to CNA, this year’s evening show has been specifically designed to cater to home viewers, with choreography, sets, and digital animations best enjoyed on your television screens.

The show will screen a sequence of short films showcasing 31 stories as well as songs by local artistes.


NDP show committee chair Colonel Wong Shi Ming said the show will be more emotionally driven this year.

While it may not be as grand as previous parades, this year’s evening show will be “more cozy, more intimate but just as meaningful,” he said.

You have to admit, even if you don’t usually watch the NDP every year, this year’s unique segments and activities sound pretty intriguing.

This Singapore love story set in the 90s shows you why you should never wait for tomorrow. Watch it without crying:

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