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  • Writer's pictureLouisa Ong

Partnering with Uncle Ringo

Partnering with SIP with affordable rental support has allowed Uncle Ringo to transition from an amusement park to a social playground, and sponsor outings for disadvantaged families.

Founded in 1984 by Lee Woon Chiang, who continues to manage the business till this day along with his daughter, Uncle Ringo carnival is believed to be one of the rare old-school amusement parks remaining today. While new age theme parks by and large offer adrenaline pumping rides and attractions, the rides and attractions at Uncle Ringo’s carnival are more likely to indulge in reminiscence of one’s childhood.

Predominantly operating on a “travelling circus” model- setting up temporary rides and attractions during events organised by other parties (such as charity fundraisers, or school celebrations). The turning point came in 2018, when the showman behind the rides of pasar malam funfairs – a colloquial term for night bazaars – decided that it was time for Uncle Ringo to settle down. He chose the Social Innovation Park (SIP) to be Uncle Ringo’s permanent home.

Where the verdant and rustic charms of SEED@SIP meets Uncle Ringo’s romantic and a whole lot of nostalgia, provided a perfect backdrop for one of Uncle Ringo’s family favourite attractions, Uncle’s Ringo Dinosaur Land exhibit. Much of Uncle Ringo’s romantic charm stems from founder Lee’s devotion to keeping things traditional and intentionally retro. Says Mr Lee “Just like how a merry-go-round moves, carnivals like this keep bringing to people lots of fun and happiness.”

The move has been beneficial for the business and for Lee’s social aspirations. During his schooling days, he used to walk through New World Amusement Park and saw families enjoying the rides and was the happiness factor that spoke to Mr Lee. So he made Uncle Ringo’s mission to always bring fun and happiness to families as well as to promote kindness.

Since moving to SIP, Uncle Ringo has expanded on its promise to provide smiles and laughter to others. With design and content guidance from SIP, Uncle Ringo added educational, anti-bullying content into the Dinosaur Land exhibit. Also, with affordable rental at SIP, Uncle Ringo has always been a tremendous philanthropist in sponsoring outings for low-income and disadvantaged families. According to Mr Lee, working with SIP has allowed Uncle Ringo to transition from an amusement park, to a “social playground”. On top of that Uncle Ringo also champions inclusive hiring, hiring from all walks of life and age.

Through the years Uncle Ringo has already created innumerable smiles and happy memories. He stated that one of the most meaningful parts of his job is hearing from others how Uncle Ringo became a memorable part of their lives growing up. “It inspires me to move forward and continue growing as a business”, Mr Lee said.

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