Hello everyone. Clement here.
The lunar calendar is about to reach a new year, which means it’s time for one of the biggest holidays of the year for Chinese people all over the world; Chinese New Year.
Chinese New Year is celebrated during the first two weeks of spring per the Chinese lunar calendar. During this time, as a way of starting a fresh year, new clothes are worn, families get together, and many traditions are celebrated and enjoyed.
Everyone has an occasion to buy new clothing and get rid of things that are older or not worn as often anymore. The new year means a new start in life, and new clothes and fashion styles are a traditional part of greeting the new year.
A big part of Chinese New Year is the wish for good luck, prosperity, and wealth in the new year. Red is the traditional color of good luck and well-being in Chinese culture, and the red envelope is another one of the most iconic parts of this annual holiday. Every year, money changes hands between family, friends, and sometimes even coworkers. Traditionally, those who are married will give red envelopes to those who aren’t, typically to those who are younger than themselves. These red envelopes contain money, and represent wishes for good health and riches in the coming year. Common belief is to put the money under one’s pillow and sleep on it, and not open it until the end of the holiday, to increase chances for good luck during the upcoming year.
There are many more traditions and foods, but perhaps the remaining most famous one is the dragon dance. A part of many parades, a modelled lion’s head is carried at the front of a line, accompanied a drum and cymbals. Other traditions use a dragon instead with people standing beneath it, but both can be seen during the holiday. This dance is shown alongside various things like musical performances and martial arts demonstrations. It is certainly a site to see!
There are so many more Chinese New Year events to enjoy and celebrate that it would be hard to write about them all in one article. These are just a few of the traditions you can expect to enjoy in Vancouver during this festive season for one of Vancouver’s largest cultural groups. There are traditional Chinese foods, music, and various other cultural events, so please check them out and attend when you have the chance!