Annual Celebrate Our Community Event
At MarketPlace @ Factoria
Four local high school students put together hands-on educational exhibit
for mall after traveling to China last year.
(Bellevue, WA, Sept. 10, 2012) – The annual “Celebrate our Community Event” at the MarketPlace @ Factoria has an unique and exclusive element this year, thanks to four enterprising Bellevue area high school students.
In addition to musical and dance performances by several local groups, this year’s event will feature “The Panda Exhibit,” which includes life-size images of Pandas, hands-on activities, demonstrations, contests and a variety of Panda-themed prizes.
The exhibit is the dream of four young men: Jason Xu, 16, a junior at Interlake High School; Eric Yang, 15, sophomore, also at Interlake; Rain Liu, 18, Senior at Bellevue High; and Wesley Yin, 16, junior at Seattle Lutheran High School.
Their mission is to raise the consciousness of the plight of the Pandas, something they witnessed first-hand last year during their three-week trip, which included a stay in Chengdu, Sichuan Province and that city’s famed Chengdu Panda Reserve.
They watched baby Pandas nursing and the adults being fed, and were constantly entertained by the playful and adorable animals. They went shopping in the Panda House, buying a good number of souvenirs.
After returning home from their trip, they decided to see if they could bring the Panda story to the U.S. and, most specifically, to their home town of Bellevue.
Working with the marketing team at the mall, they found a date and home for their exhibition: Saturday and Sunday, September 22 & 23, at the MarketPlace, located in Bellevue’s Factoria area. It was a perfect fit with the mall’s annual cultural event. (The musical performances by local groups will all take place from noon to 3 pm on Saturday at the Mall’s Center Court area.)
Next, they contacted the Panda House and the Chengdu Research Base of Great Panda Breeding in China, where they secured the ingredients for their exhibit: the elements of the exhibit itself, including large posters and displays, along with Panda souvenirs, everything from “plushies”
The exhibit will focus on the history, living habits, research and commercial impact of Pandas around the world, as well as their relevance to worldwide environmental protection.
In addition to the educational element, there will be a charity bazaar, a donation collection area, and games and prizes. Participants will have the chance to design t-shirts, paint and personalize their own Panda and play games.
Proceeds from donations will go the Chengdu Panda Reserve, a sanctuary for 50 Red and Giant Pandas.
All events at the MarketPlace are free. The mall is open Saturday from 10-8 and Sunday from 11-8. The exhibit will be available throughout both days.
More information is available on the Mall website: www.marketplaceatfactoria.com/