New Year, New 你 , Xinnian Kuaile!

Happy Chinese New Year or "Xinnian Kuaile!" to everyone who celebrates this exciting national holiday. 

As the Year of the Monkey comes to an end on January 28, 2017, Chinese New Year welcomes in a new year, the Year of the Rooster. China Highlights explains the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiak, as well as the details of the Year of the Rooster

 

According to the New York Times:

For thousands of years, as early as in the Zhou dynasty, roosters have been viewed “as in charge of time,” said Shenzhan Liao, the director of the school of Chinese studies at the China Institute, a cultural and education center in downtown Manhattan. “The rooster wakes up the day and is considered to be in charge of the light.”

This year Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year or China's Spring Festival Public Holiday is celebrated from January 27 through February 2. It is a holiday to celebrate hard work and wish for the coming year to be prosperous and lucky.  

Chinese New Year is a big deal, not just because it is the largest usage of fireworks anywhere on the globe, but also because 1/5 of the world's population celebrate this holiday.

In China, the cities known for their Chinese New Year celebrations are Beijing, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Harbin. Beijing celebrates with temple fairs that offer martial arts, opera, acrobatics, lion and dragon dances and traditional foods. Guangzhou touts their flower fairs with lion dance performances, which are often the pre-party and celebrated a few days early. Hong Kong is where you go for fireworks, parades and horse racing. Harbin is the place to be for the Ice Lantern Festival and the snow sculpture festival.

 

But if you can't make it to China, there are plenty of other places to celebrate. Last year was the first year New York City officially made Chinese New Year a public school holiday, since NYC has the largest Chinese population outside of Asia. Time Out New York offers ideas for where to celebrate Chinese New Year and see the parade. West Coasters can find numerous events in San Francisco and Las Vegas. Las Vegas will have it's CNY in the Desert for the 6th year in a row and most Las Vegas hotels and resorts decorate to honor the holiday. 

 Cesar's Palace, Las Vegas, NV

Cesar's Palace, Las Vegas, NV

 

CNN suggests a variety of places to celebrate Chinese New Year such as London, San Francisco, Sydney, Helsinki, Nuanquan Town, and if you want to get off the beaten path, Patagonia. 

And if you're caught in between two locations, don't worry, many airports will be decorating and celebrating Chinese New Year. 

Happy New Year! Best wishes and good fortune for the Year of the Rooster wherever you are.

Bev Gray