Wed, Jan 23, 2013 - Page 5 News List

Changhua village turns creative with scarecrows

By Chang Tsung-chiu and Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Changhua County Hsuanwu Charity chairman Yu Cheng-chieh, right, and another man make the sign language sign for “heart” as they stand between straw scarecrows in Masing Village in the county’s Sioushuei Township on Saturday.

Photo: Chang Tsung-chiu, Taipei Times

Residents of Masing Village (馬興) in Changhua County’s Sioushuei Township (秀水) have erected a dozen amusing scarecrows ranging from well-known cartoon characters, such as SpongeBob and Angry Birds, to robot figures wearing bamboo hats in an effort to promote the community’s rice farming culture.

In collaboration with nearby communities, members of the Masing Community Development Association and the Changhua County Hsuanwu Charity recently explored their creativity and breathed new life into ordinary straw by transforming the straw into a variety of scarecrows.

“The scarecrows we set up were made from sun-dried rice straw harvested in the second season,” said Chou Chia-mao (周家茂), chairman of the association’s longevity club, adding that the creations infused straw with an artistic flavor and were aimed at highlighting the distinctive features of the village, which is known for its rice production.

Changhua County Hsuanwu Charity chairman Yu Cheng-chieh (尤正傑) said the unique scarecrows also served marketing and environmental purposes.

Singling out two scarecrows clad in volunteer vests and bamboo hats that stood alongside a heart-shaped iron artwork, Yu said the display — titled Heart to Heart (心心相映) — symbolized the idea of the charity joining hands with the community in serving the village’s residents and advertising its rice.

Other scarecrows on display included an animated robot and characters in Angry Birds and SpongeBob Squarepants, as well as straw figures in human shapes that represented family harmony.

A number of objects, such as urns, work gloves and recycled clothes, were also used to embellish the agriculture-themed art pieces.

Association director Chen Ming-tsao (陳明灶) recommended that people who are coming to see the scarecrows should also visit the Yiyuan ancient house (益源古厝) in the village, where they can also take part in various family-friendly activities, such as a rice cuisine contest and tasting event.

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