Sticking to the festive theme, we had another Christmas fair on Saturday. This time it was the 2017 Christmas Bazaar at Beijing City International School’s (BCIS) Main Campus. It was our sixth time hosting this event with BCIS and it did notdisappoint. It was jam-packed with a whopping 70 stalls and over 2,000 attendees in total. There was food from around the world – Philly cheese steak sandwiches, craft sausages, and meatballs, to name a few. We could have written a blog post about the food alone!

The event was full of people stocking up on Christmas gifts and they weren’t disappointed as there were plenty of

Christmassy items on offer. The vendors sold roasted chestnuts, nut butter, purses, jewellery, bath bombs and much, much more. There was English coffee (we didn’t know this was a thing!) complete with fun facts about coffee from Roger at Idea Coffee. You couldn’t forget you were in Beijing, either, as there were high tech air purifiers and masks being sold.

There was plenty of family fun on offer. When the kids weren’t having their faces painted by Cambridge Mask Company, they could be found doing some exciting experiments with Fun with Science, which is run by David Evans, a long time supporter of MCF. Proving that science can be fun, these kids looked adorable in their oversized lab coats.

As for the performances, these were a big highlight of the day. Two of our MCF Kids’ Clubs perform at the event. Dulwich were back with their students to perform, and BCIS brought their students from an MCF school in South Beijing to perform. The kids from south Beijing came with their schoolteacher Demi who commented on how much fun the kids had that day. Volunteer Coordinator Lorna only had good things to say about the performances: “The performances are an excellent opportunity for the students from the migrant schools we work with to, not only perform in front of a large crowd and show what they can do, but also get a great sense of achievement after all their hard work. Plus, Dulwich and BCIS students see their hard work pay off and feel proud of the students as they take to the stage. It’s wonderful to see such a great result of the cooperation between the schools.”

MCF also had a presence, of course. We had a lucky dip again, and also a very popular raffle. The prizes were off the scale this year and included a trip to the Rosewood hotel, discounts for bars and restaurants, amongst other exciting things. We would like to thank everyone that bought raffle tickets – including the lady that bought 500RMB’s worth! There were crowds swarming our MC, Chad, as he announced the coveted results. One lucky winner, Liz, said, “Who could resist not buying a raffle ticket? You could see that the baskets were incredibly well put together, and winning a basket was even better!”

The event was organised by Caroline, one of MCF’s events organisers, and she said it was a “fabulous day with lots of support from BCIS for the venue and logistics support. The vendors were awesome, and the volunteers all worked tirelessly to ensure the event went smoothly. The attendance was superb and there was lots of joy around!” The volunteers also had a sense of humour – spot the pun from our volunteer, Maddy: “It’s going merry, merry well. It’s a feast for the senses – smells good, looks good, tastes good!” Volunteer Coordinator, Lorna, said that she always looks forward to the BCIS bazaar and that it was “a real family affair. I’ve had such a great day! We were super busy planning it but it always pays off when you see the success of the event.” Helen, MCF founder, also had good words to say and thanked everyone for their hard work and commented on how happy everyone was at the event.

That’s all for now, but look out for our update on what else we did this past month!