Jeremy Lin shoe auctioned
A basketball shoe belonging to Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin (林書豪) is being auctioned on one of the nation’s main online auction platforms, with the proceeds to go to the Down Syndrome Foundation. The bidding for the size 12 red Nike Hyperdunk on Yahoo Taiwan’s auction Web site will end on Friday evening. Lin, the first Taiwanese-American to play in the NBA, wore the shoe during an NBA pre-season game in Taipei last week. After the game, Lin autographed the shoe and gave it to a local celebrity, who in turn donated it to the foundation. As of last night, there have been 15 bids, with the top bid reaching NT$301,500. The auction is part of the 12th anniversary celebration of Yahoo Taiwan’s auction Web site.
No change on Sijhih MRT
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) promised on Saturday that there has been no change in the government’s plan to build a metro line linking Taipei and New Taipei City’s (新北市) Sijhih District (汐止). Ma stirred up worries among residents in Sijhih and Keelung earlier in the week, when comments he made praising a project to expand the commuter train line were seen as signaling that the government may be dropping its backing for the new metro line. A feasibility study for the Minsheng-Sijhih line was completed in 2004, when Ma was mayor of Taipei, and he announced a plan to extend the metro line to Keelung during his 2008 presidential campaign. However, the project is still awaiting the approval of the Cabinet. The Ministry of Transportation and Communications said earlier in the week in a statement that a final report on the line is expected to be completed at the end of the year before being sent to the Cabinet for approval.
Marine patrol craft to arrive
The military said yesterday it will hold a ceremony marking the delivery of the first P-3C marine patrol aircraft from the US at the end of this month, with President Ma presiding. No date for the ceremony has been announced. The first of 12 P-3C aircraft arrived on Sept. 25, and another three are set to arrive by the year’s end. The 12 planes and related equipment and services, worth more than US$1.96 billion, are part of an arms deal with the US announced in 2007. The P-3C planes perform air, surface and subsurface patrols, as well as reconnaissance tasks. Described as long-endurance aircraft, the P-3C planes are capable of remaining airborne for 12 hours, with a range of 2,800 nautical miles (5,185km). All 12 aircraft are scheduled to arrive by 2015 and will be housed at the air force’s Pingtung air base.
Taiwanese choirs win gold
Two choirs from Taiwan won gold medals at the Busan Choral Festival and Competition in Busan, South Korea, which ended on Saturday night. The Cheng Gong High School choir from Taipei won the top prize in the Children and Youth category, and the Taipei Youth Choir, which consisted mainly of alumni from Cheng Gong High School, was awarded the gold medal in the classical mixed category. Nieh Yen-hsiang (聶焱庠), the conductor of both choirs, received the best conductor award. The festival was held from Monday to Saturday, bringing together more than 500 people in different choirs from 12 countries to compete in six categories, including classical mixed, classical equal, senior, ethnic, acapella ensemble, and children and youth.