Tainan hosts candy festival
This year's World Candy Cultural Festival is slated to open at the Hsiaolung Cultural Park in Tainan County on Jan. 21, Tainan County government officials said. At a pre-event news conference, Tainan County Magistrate Su Huan-dji (蘇煥智) said that with the experience of holding last year's event, he is confident this year's festival will be a big success. According to the county government's plans, there will be six pavilions, with five dedicated to displaying candies from the US, Taiwan, Europe, Asia and Japan, including one reserved just for chocolate. The county government will also invite a Japanese Hello Kitty dance troupe to perform during the Lunar New Year holiday from Jan. 28-Feb. 2, and will provide a 10-story Ferris wheel for visitors. The festival will run through March 19.
New Year party planned
To celebrate the arrival of the Year of the Dog, several foreign chambers of commerce in Taipei together with radio station ICRT will co-host a colorful Chinese New Year's party on Saturday at the Red Theater in the bustling Ximending shopping district. Taipei Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) will also attend the party, which is open to all members of the public who would like to take part, ICRT said. The party will feature several special performances, such as a dragon and lion dance, at the indoor event between 5:30pm and 7pm on the second floor of the theater. Free snacks and beverages will also be served. An outdoor event in front of the theater will be held between 7pm and 9pm, with an ICRT disk jockey and famous Taiwanese singers and dance groups putting on performances to entertain visitors.
Hong dismisses mayoral bid
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Hong Chi-chang (洪奇昌) yesterday dismissed speculation that he would run in the year-end Taipei mayoral election. "I'm not thinking about it right now," he said. "I can only appreciate the kindness of the media." Hong made the remarks in response to a media report claiming Hong is thinking of entering the race as some party members, especially Taipei City councilors, are trying to convince him to pursue the city's top job. Former DPP lawmaker Shen Fu-hsiung (沈富雄) said yesterday that Hong has consulted him about the issue four times. Shen himself has expressed a keen interest in entering the race. DPP Legislator Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇), a former Taipei councilor, said he met with DPP city councilors on Monday night and did not hear any of them express the wish to see Hong run.
`Hidden victims' need care
An estimated 160,000 local children who witness domestic violence need care from society, a member of the Taipei Women's Rescue Foundation (TWRF) said yesterday. The foundation made the call at a news conference held at the Legislative Yuan. Citing statistics from the Family Violence Prevention Commission, members of the foundation said that during the two-year period from January 2004 to December last year, courts managed a total of 13,519 domestic violence cases. Calculated based on the criterion that every household has an average of 1.2 children, nearly 160,000 children have witnessed domestic violence and are in need of society's care, said the members, adding that the children who witness domestic violence are usually hidden victims.