“This year’s Mid-Autumn Festival will be celebrated in traditional fashion with a lantern parade at Victoria Park on September 30,” the South China Morning Post reported on September 14, 1974. The Lantern Carnival ’74 was to feature “traditional dragon and lion dances, Cantonese opera, magic and acrobatic shows, Chiu Chow folk dances, a fashion show, and other song and dance performances”, culminating with “a mass parade in which 200 members of the school safety patrols will light up the park with colourful lanterns”. The carnival had “received the full support of the tourism industry”, the Post reported on September 23. Mid-Autumn lantern displays in Victoria Park have become an established event hosted by the government, but back in 1974 that was not the case. Which was why the Association of Travel Agents donated HK$1,000 towards the festival in “hopes the carnival will become an annual event”. Deputy executive director of the Hongkong Tourist Association D.B. Donaldson also felt Hong Kong may have been leaning too hard on its reputation as a financial centre and was lacking in more cultural and historical events. “We are greatly disturbed by the steady erosion of many traditional Chinese cultural activities and practices in Hong Kong as so many of these are of great interest to our visitors,” he said. On September 29, Tang Shiu-kin – a philanthropist and chairman of Tung Wah Group of Hospitals – and social activist Augustine Chiu dotted the eyes of a 55-foot (16.7 metre) golden dragon and officially marked the beginning of the Mid-Autumn Festival’s first Victoria Park carnival. For all intents and purposes, the spectacle achieved its objectives, and the Post reported on October 1 that “thousands of people flocked to Victoria Park to enjoy a special lantern carnival”.