Think twice if you believe Chinese New Year is only celebrated in China or Chinatowns worldwide.
From London to New York, with colorful parades, fireworks and red lanterns, people across the globe are now joining the Chinese in celebrating the arrival of the Year of Rooster.
On Sunday morning, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau led a procession of political leaders, community groups and dancers through Vancouver’s historic Chinatown for the city’s annual Chinese New Year Parade.
Spectators were standing shoulder-to-shoulder along the sidewalks as fire crackers snapped over a din of drums. Lion dancers dressed in silver, purple and red lurched and bobbed to the backing of drum beats outside the Chinese Cultural Center. The event marked the largest assembly of lion dancers in all of Canada and attracted nearly 100,000 spectators.
“I love the Chinese New Year Parade because it brings all cultures together to celebrate the Asian culture and that’s what we do in Vancouver,” said Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson.
The Chinese Lunar New Year, or the Spring Festival, is China’s most important and ceremonious traditional festival. The week-long holiday is about family reunion and togetherness, just like Christmas in the West.
The festival is celebrated at the turn of the traditional lunisolar Chinese calendar. Celebrations traditionally run from the evening preceding the first day, to the Lantern Festival on the 15th day of the first calendar month. This year, the first day of the Chinese lunar new year falls on Saturday, initiating the year of the Rooster, based on the Chinese zodiac. The far-flung celebration offers people beyond the country an opportunity to feel the charm of China’s traditions and culture.
In Britain, the 2017 Chinese New Year has been welcomed with its biggest ever program of events and celebrations.—Xinhua