Lunar New Year: Tradition that Kicks Off with a Bang!By admin | Comments: 0 | January 8, 2018
Everyone has their preference on how to celebrate the New Year and one quarter of the world’s population choose to do it differently for the Lunar New Year.
Also referred to as the Chinese New Year, Lunar New Year marks an important time of celebration and is a major holiday in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Vietnam and Taiwan. China’s neighbouring countries Singapore, Philippines, Indonesia, Brunei, North Korea, and South Korea also traditionally celebrate the Lunar New Year.
How the Lunar New Year date is decided
Chinese New Year is dictated by the Chinese lunar calendar, which falls on a date varied between 21 January and 20 February every year. The Chinese believe that a year begins and ends according to this specified date – Friday 16 February will bring in the Chinese New Year for 2018.
Each Chinese year is associated with an animal sign from the Chinese zodiac, repeated every 12 years and represented by a different zodiac animal. Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig in order represent the 12 years. These animals were originally selected for their relevance to ancient Chinese people’s lives and their representation of good luck.
This upcoming year (2018) will be a year of the Dog. According to Chinese superstition, you will have a year of bad luck in your birth sign year. For those who believe in superstitions, wear something red gifted to you by an elder (a piece of jewellery or wristband will suffice) to avoid the bad luck. See what Chinese zodiac sign you are here.
Activities associated with Lunar New Year
The Chinese festival dates back to over 3000 years with lunar New Year’s Day going back to the ancient worship of heaven and earth. Over time new traditions have been added and entertainment is now a major player of Chinese New Year festivities.
Traditions and the celebratory methods for Chinese New Year varies across the country. These variations go right down to what is eaten – in the north of the country dumplings are preferred. The southern Chinese eat spring rolls or sticky rice cake to commemorate the occasion.
The main traditions include a dinner with family, gifting red envelopes, firecrackers and fireworks aplenty, new clothes and decorations. People will also undertake a huge house clean the week leading up to Chinese New Year to ready their home for the upcoming new year and welcome good fortune.
Chinese New Year entertainment
Performances take place from New Year’s Day. Dragon dances, lion dances, and imperial performances like an emperor’s wedding are all traditional on Chinese New Year.
Fireworks are huge on the entertainment list. China produces about 90% of the world’s fireworks and does not hold back on New Year’s Eve. They believe the noise and flashing of fireworks scare away demons and evil ghosts.
The Lunar New Year is a time of much celebration and tradition. It spreads across many countries and is seen abundantly throughout China town districts in Australia. Why don’t you join the celebrations this February too!
Organising your own Chinese New Year celebrations?
Gaia Rhythm Events can arrange quality Chinese New Year entertainment and theming for your event. Say G’day to New Year the Chinese way – click here to get in touch with our team.