Year of the Dragon 4710: Lunar New Year 01.23.2012

The Lunar New Year celebration is observed by the Chinese, Koreans, and Vietnamese. This is the main event of the year, for more than one quarter of the world’s population. "Spring Festival," is the the literal translation of the Chinese New Year. In China, the Dragon is the imperial symbol and the male element of Yang, wish is synonymous with power and wealth. The Dragon has emerged the following years: 1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, and 2012 . According to Chinese horoscope, people born in the year of the Dragon are imaginative, decisive, self-confident, curious, generous and romantic .

Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy New Year


Chinese New Year begins with the New Moon on the first day of the new year and ends on the full moon 15 days later. The 15th day of the new year is called the Lantern Festival which is celebrated in the evening with lantern displays and children carrying lanterns in a festive parade. The Lantern Festival seems to have originated in ancient times as a ceremony to usher in the increasing light and warmth of the sun after the winter’s cold.

A Few of the New Year Traditions..

  • House Cleaning The entire house should be cleaned before New Year. On New Year’s Eve, all brooms, brushes, dusters, dust pans and other cleaning equipment are put away. Sweeping or dusting should not be done for fear that good fortune be swept away.
  • Personal Appearance & Cleanliness On New Year’s Day, we are not suppose to wash our hair because it would mean we would have washed away good luck for the new year. Red is considered to bring the wearer a sunny and bright future. It is believed that appearance and attitude during New Year’s sets the tone for the year.
  • Oranges and Tangerine Etiquette dictates that you must bring a bag of oranges and tangerines and enclose a red packet when visiting family or friends anytime during the two week long Chinese New Year celebration. Tangerines with leaves intact assure that one’s relationship with the other remains secure. Oranges and tangerines are symbols for abundant happiness.
  • Family Reunions New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are celebrated as a family affair, a time of reunion, giving thanks and taking stock in all your good fortunes.
  • The Red Envelop this is a traditional New Year's gift in Chinese and other Asian cultures. The red envelope or red packet is called Hong Bao (literally red packet) in Mandarin Chinese. 
  • Bringing in the New Year and Expelling the Old Shooting off firecrackers on New Year’s Eve is the Chinese way of sending out the old year and welcoming in the new year. On the stroke of twelve on New Year’s Eve, every door in the house, and even windows, have to be open to allow the old year to go out.
  • New Year Actives Set Precedent All debts had to paid by this time. Everyone should refrain from using foul language and bad or unlucky words. Negative terms and the word “four” (Ssu) as it sounds like the like the word for death are not uttered. Everything should be turned towards the new Year and a new beginning. If you cry on New Year’s day, you will cry all through the year.

Chinese New Year Celebration in San Francisco

In 1847 San Francisco was a sleepy little village known as Yerba Buena with a population of 459. With the discovery of gold and the ensuing California Gold Rush, by 1849, over 50,000 people had come to San Francisco to seek their fortune or just a better way of life. Among those were many Chinese, who had come to work in the gold mines and on the railroad. By the 1860's, the Chinese were eager to share their culture by using a favorite American tradition - the Parade. Nowhere in the world will you see a lunar new year parade with more gorgeous floats, elaborate costumes, ferocious lions, exploding firecrackers and a crowd favorite, the spectacular 250' Golden Dragon ("Gum Lung") It takes a team of over 100 men and women from the martial arts group, White Crane to carry this dragon throughout the streets of San Francisco. If in town Saturday, February 11, 2012 don't miss it SF-ChineseParade

Chinese New Year Celebration in Los Angeles

Los Angeles Golden Dragon Parade
Saturday, Jan, 28 2012 is the 113th Annual Golden Dragon Parade. With over thousands and thousands of individuals lining the parade route and thousands viewing the telecast each year, this colorful celebration along North Broadway in Chinatown has become the premiere cultural event in the Southern California Asian-American Community.

Favorite Chinese Proverbs

  • A smile will gain you ten more years of life
  • Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere
  • When eating bamboo sprouts, remember the man who planted them
  • The diamond cannot be polished without friction, nor the man perfected without trials
  • The broad-minded see the truth in different religions; the narrow-minded see only the differences
  • The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today 

Express your New Year wish for the year of Dragon


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