Event: Chinese Taipei Touch Tournament

This is just a bit of cross promotion for something I’m heavily involved in here in Taiwan.  About 10 months ago I started playing Touch Football, and have become involved in running training on Tuesdays & Saturdays, as well as organising tournaments and what not.  It’s been great fun, and most of the people I call friends in Taipei I know through Touch.

Aaaanyway … a couple of weeks ago we had our national Touch tournament. It was a fantastic day, with teams from Taipei, Taichung and even Hong Kong (!!) taking part.  We even had a representative from the Japan national team playing for one of the sides.

There’s a more comprehensive write up here.

If you’d like to get involved in Touch, visit our website, and like our Facebook page!

Events: Eslite 誠品 Unplugged 分享現場

洪申豪 @ Xinyi Eslite

洪申豪 @ Xinyi Eslite

I’ve recently found out about a series of live FREE music gigs that

take place on Friday nights at various Eslite bookstores around Taiwan.  Obviously I only know details for the ones in Taipei, but if you are in Taichung, or Kaohsiung be sure to keep a look out.  It’s a nice way to unwind on a Friday night, with a small crowd & a local Taiwanese band playing some tunes.

Last week I was a the flagship Xinyi store to see 洪申豪 play some songs from his new album LIGHT CORAL, and tonight I made my way to the Tianmu store to see a short gig by BIKE樂團.

All the gigs start at 8pm, and go for about 1 hour.  Keep an eye out at your local Eslite (or online – www.gigguide.tw or Eslite Music) for November’s lineups.

Events: BOUNCE Exhibition (BOUNCE就是要跳藝術展)

I found out about this exhibition through a friend.  I can’t tell you too much about it, because all the information online & at the exhibition itself is in Chinese, so I would strongly advise going along with a friend who can read Chinese.

That said, I can tell you this.  The event is being held in Nangang, which is an area of Taipei City which I certainly don’t frequent all that often, so it was nice to get out there & see somewhere new.  It is being presented by Heineken Light, and features the work of six Taiwanese artists,  including Akibo Lee – the man behind the Big Pow robot at Zhongshan (if you don’t know what I’m talking about … http://myblog-joseph.blogspot.tw/2010/09/blog-post_14.html).

It was a rainy day, and the exhibition is housed in several buildings, in what seemed to be a former industrial estate, so getting between the different artists displays was a bit of a drag (walking in the rain, avoiding puddles etc).  There weren’t many people there, and the layout of the event is a little all over the place, though it was a good way to while away a few hours, rather than being stuck at home watching the rain come down.  My personal favourite display was a rocking horse & video display, who’s speed was controlled by the pace of the rider’s pulse.  Very cool.

I’ve included a map below, so that you can find your way there from Nangang MRT Station.  Please note this is Nangang station, not Taipei Nangang Exhibition Centre Station!  More info @ http://www.wowlavie.com/agenda_in.php?keyword&article_id=AE1300479&c=%E9%80%9B%E5%B1%95%E8%A6%BD (all in Chinese).

Events: WoodyWoody @ Odeum Square (NTU)

I happened upon this concert just by chance.  I was looking around the NTU (National Taiwan University) website & accidentally clicked on this link.  Being a student at the NTU language school, and not living on campus, I sometimes feel like I’m not able to fully get involved in activities/events at the university.  So when I saw this, and had a listen to the guys music, I made sure that I would go!

WoodyWoody is a band formed in 2008 by two friends who met through guitar.  They’ve released 3 EPs & an album, and their work is a purely acoustic guitar (a lot of it played using the “fingerstyle”) and comprises of solos & duets.  I have to say I was really impressed with their guitar skills, and the songs they composed & performed.  It was a great, very relaxing, way to end a nice spring day, and I’m definitely going to keep an eye out for any more of their performances around town.  Below is the only picture I took from the night, using my phone, and another from their Facebook page.  I’ve also included a YouTube link to one of their songs.  Enjoy.

Nice crowd, good weather, great performance.

Nice crowd, good weather, great performance.

WoodyWoody + Guest

Events: Fubon’s Very Fun Park

I’m actually quite excited about this.  I hadn’t heard of the Fubon Art Foundation’s Very Fun Park concept until I read this article on Taipei 543.  I’m looking forward to seeing what this year’s exhibition will be like, and looking forward to spending a day or two traversing parts of Taipei city in search of art.

Sometimes, as daily life goes on, we tend to get stuck just staying in our own local area, and we miss out on seeing so much more of Taipei City.  More things like this can help take us to some areas we’ve not yet seen.  Can’t wait!

Fubon Art Foundation website: http://www.fubonart.org.tw/ (information will be posted here)

Event: Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival

This is one event that I really wanted to see when I was in Taiwan, and I finally got the chance.  It’s a pretty cool day out, and a great experience to send your own lantern flying up into the night sky.  There’s plenty of information around the internet about the festival itself, so I’ll just leave a few pointers on getting there/away & what to expect.  The event is held on 3 separate days, with the final one being on the 15th day after the Lunar New Year.

I’ll say it straight up, expect a crowd.

Getting there: Bus from MRT Muzha or MRT Taipei Zoo Stations (more services from the Zoo).  You can also take the train, but the bus is much more direct. Bus takes ~1hour 20minutes.
**NOTE: Buses will be crowded, so you may be standing the whole way.  If you get motion sickness easily, do take whatever precautions you can.

Once there: There’s a few things you can do while waiting for the night time release of lanterns:

  • Walk the old street in Shifen – it will be crowded, but there’s plenty of street food on offer to keep you from going hungry.
  • People start releasing lanterns from about midday, so you can watch them writing their wishes on them, and letting them go.  They release them in the main street itself, or on the train line (between the houses – couple of pictures below).  Cool to watch the lanterns fly up through the houses.
  • Go for a walk – there’s a few streets that lead off from the main lantern festival area which you can just wander around.
  • Buy, write on, and release your own lantern!!
  • Find a vantage point, so you don’t have to fight for a place to watch the lanterns at night.

Do take some food/water with you, and a picnic blanket too if you want to get a spot early.  People seemed to start staking out places from about 4:30pm, so if you find a good place, keep it in mind & get back there early.

Getting back: The line for the bus will be crazy long, so expect to wait for at least 30 (probably longer) minutes.  There are two lines – for those who want a seat on the bus (longer line), and those who are willing to stand (quicker line, but still really long).  The buses are free, and will take you all the way back to MRT Taipei Zoo station.  Again, if you get motion sickness, take precautions.

Now for the pictures ! 🙂

Crazy long line for the bus home.

Crazy long line for the bus home.

A family release their lantern in the middle of Shifen town.

A family release their lantern in the middle of Shifen town.

Lanterns flying away into the dusk sky.

Lanterns flying away into the dusk sky.