KOTA MARUDU (Nov 10) : The annual PestaJagung which has become a feature of the district since 2001, is being held on Nov 10 and 11 this year with many exciting activities at the vicinity of the Kota Marudu Community Hall.
The festival is being held for the 12th time to celebrate corn as an important agricultural product of the district as well as promote other agricultural activities which have contributed to the economic income of farmers in Kota Marudu.
Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Maximus Ongkili, who is also Kota Marudu MP, will launch the festival on Sunday.
“We welcome the public and visitors from near and far to spend this weekend in Kota Marudu for the PestaJagung,” said Dr Ongkili who initiated the festival as part of the 1 District, 1 Product campaign.
The festival is also supported by the state Tourism, Culture and Environment Ministry and state Youth and Sports Ministry. Activities are designed for public participation as well as to preserve traditional community activities.
These include competition to cook corn-based dishes, cultural shows, RatuJagung (Corn Queen) and Fashion competition, drawing and reading contest, corn- themed craft competition, lantern competition and traditional sports such as tug-of-war.
Dr Ongkili will also be launching the Sabah-level PenggerakInovasi 1Malaysia (1Malaysia Innovation Catalysts) or called “i-CATS” which is a young volunteer initiative under YayasanInovasi Malaysia (YIM), where youths participate as important agents of innovation among the communities throughout the country.
On Saturday evening, the public were treated to a Pentas Rakyat 1Malaysia concert and the preliminary rounds of the PestaRatuJagung competition at the Pekan Kota Marudu field.
Several booths are also set up to showcase products and services, participated by federal and state Government agencies and the private sector such as the Bandau Bay Recreation 4×4 Club.
The Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation is also participating in the exhibition through its 10 agencies; Sirim, CyberSecurity Malaysia, Technology Park Malaysia, .myDomain Registry, PusatSains Negara, Jabatan Kimia Malaysia, Nuclear Malaysia, Malaysian Meteorology Department, Agensi Remote Sensing Malaysia and YIM.
In 2009, the PestaJagung made it into the Malaysia Book of Records for a successful attempt to grill 5,000 corn at one go and in 2010 a record was created for the largest simultaneous corn eating activity involving 2010 cobs of corn.