Indonesian communities in the North West will celebrate Indonesia's 69th anniversary of Independence with national dance, games, fashion, and food on Sunday 17th August 2014 at Lowton Civic Hall, Hesketh Meadow Lane, Warrington WA3 2AH.
The event will also be a big celebration for democracy, as Indonesia has recently elected its 7th president Joko Widodo. Indonesian communities in the UK are celebrating Widodo's victory. He is deemed the people's choice, started as an underdog, but ended up as a symbol of hope, much like President Obama in 2008.
|Photo by: Heni Lockitt (Dapoer Chinta)|
The day will start with national anthem "Indonesia Raya" at 11:30 followed by the cutting of Nasi Tumpeng (mountain of rice surrounded by assorted Indonesian dishes) which is part of slamatan – communal feast symbolising the social unity of all participants and in this event, as a celebration of democracy. There will be entertainment and a food market, Poco-Poco (traditional line dance from Sulawesi), fashion show, and traditional games such as tug of war, sack racing and krupuk eating. Entertainment will also include Indonesian traditional and national songs.
The event offers food stalls selling a variety of dishes from the 13,000 islands of Indonesia such as the famous nasi goreng, gado-gado (mix vegetable salad), rujak (fruit salad), siomay (dumplings), satay and many more. An Indonesian grocery shop from Stoke-on-Trent will sell specialised Indonesian food ingredients such as organic tempe, peanut/satay sauce, krupuk (traditional crisps), and more. Stall holders will be happy to share advice on food and recipes to the public.
Yanthie Gordon, organiser and stall holder from Stoke-on-Trent, said that she has some customers who will be coming frome Stoke as well as members of East Timorese community from Crewe. "The fact that East Timorese people are showing their interest and solidarity to our Independence Day and celebration of Democracy shows the hospitality, peaceful, and friendliness of Indonesia. Our Timorese friends hold no grudge for the decades of Indonesian occupation over East Timor, and Indonesians accept their wishes of independence," said Gordon.
Other stalls will offer traditional and modern dresses, jewellery, art and crafts, and Indonesian back and head massage. Also, "the fashion show will feature modern and traditional clothes, including Muslim fashion and clothing," said Mida Croft, another organiser and stall holder.
The idea came from three friends – Yanthie Gordon, Mida Croft and Heni Lockitt – who thought about a different way of celebrating Indonesia Day. Lockitt said, "Starting from a small idea between friends who miss their homeland and food, we now receive interests from Indonesian communities all over the country including those from the Midland, Lincolnshire, Wales, and Yorkshire."
Indonesia gained its independence from the Netherlands through decades of fighting. Declaration of Independence was on 17 August 1945 and in 1949 the UN recognised Indonesia as a sovereign country. In 1998, through people's power Indonesians toppled its dictator of 32 years. In 1999, East Timor (now Timor Leste) had a referendum that resulted in their independence from Indonesia. Today Indonesians are awaiting the inauguration of its 7th president, Joko Widodo, who is famous for his tolerance, non-militaristic background, and background as a rock star.
|By: Heni Lockitt (Dapoer Chinta)|