Welcoming the Dragon

[Cartoon by Chen Chunming via China Media Project]

We are already on Day 5 of the Year of the Dragon, but it is not too late to celebrate. Lunar New Year is a two-week celebration, from the first new moon of the lunar calendar to the first full moon. If you are lucky enough to live in the Bay Area, there are lots of fun events coming up in the next few weeks.

This weekend, Solano Avenue holds its annual Lunar New Year parade and celebration on Sunday January 29. Performances will be held at the Albany Twin Theater from 10-12 and then a parade will march up the avenue.

The same day, from 12-4:30, our family’s favorite Lunar New year celebration will be held at the Oakland Museum. This event includes a wide variety of performances, crafts, and food from all over Asia (a special highlight is the mochi pounding).

Saturday, February 11 is a big day for the Lunar New Year in San Francisco. A unique and very San Francisco way to ring in the new year, Chinese New Year Treasure Hunt, will be held on Justin Herman Plaza starting at 4:30. From their description:

The Chinese New Year Treasure Hunt is a unique urban sleuthing adventure played on the streets of Chinatown, North Beach, and Telegraph Hill on the night of the annual Chinese New Year Parade. Treasure hunting teams have four hours to solve sixteen clues leading them to obscure landmarks, forgotten architectural delights and vestiges of San Francisco’s colorful past. Players can come with a team already organized, or can join like-minded hunters at the event; it’s a great way to make new friends.

The same day, the San Francisco Symphony has a special Chinese New Year performance at 4pm. And the annual Chinese New Year parade in Chinatown - the largest such event outside Asia – is from 6-8 pm.

To see how people are celebrating the new year in Beijing (firecrackers, firecrackers, and more firecrackers) see this beautiful video produced by the New York Times:

And if you have questions about the basics of Chinese New Year, check out this primer from the New York Times.

To honor Chinese New Year, MomsRising has hosted a blog carnival from Asian and Asian-American bloggers with their thoughts about family as the Year of the Dragon begins.

恭喜发财!

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