It’s Chinese New Year!

Lily Scott, Writer

Beginning Saturday, January 25th, an exciting event begins. For those who are not familiar with this celebration, it’s pretty much a fun way to greet the New Year! For this year, {2020} it starts on January 25th and ends on February 8th. The way you ring in the new year in China, is to visit with friends and family, enjoy festival treats, as well as pray at the temple, and finish up the night watching a traditional firework show while dancing!

Every year, there is always a specific animal for this celebration. This year marks the Year of the Rat. The Year of the Metal Rat becomes a year of new beginnings. The zodiac reads, “the Metal Rat year is going to be a strong, prosperous, and lucky year. Everyone will show determination regarding their goals, aspirations, and even hobbies. It happens to be a great year for founding and evolving!”

Animals play a significant role in the Chinese New Year, and the twelve animals of the Zodiac represent the passage of time, and the cycle of years. The twelve special animals include in this order, the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog, and the pig. On the Chinese New Year, the most fireworks are set off in the world that night!! Unfortunately, fireworks have been banned in over 500 cities in China, due to unsafe practices.

The people don’t care and have fun anyway. Also on this night, some families burn fake money made of paper and printed gold bars in honor of their deceased loved ones. Though all of this is cool, the most important thing about this long festival is family. Everybody should make it home for the special New Year’s Eve dinner.

Strangely enough, if you feel too disappointed to return home without a date for New Years, you can actually bring home a fake boyfriend or girlfriend to your family. That’s pretty much what a lot of singles do in China. One fun thing for the children, is receiving a red envelope filled with money.

Also called red pockets, the money is used to transfer fortune from elders to kids. They can also be handed out between employees, bosses, and even friends. While there are a couple odd traditions, I think most of us can agree that for any festival or party, the food is always the best part!! In China, the New Year’s dinner is the time to catch up on life with each other, and to enjoy some of the best dishes!

One of the most iconic and traditional yet, has to be the spring rolls. Which happen to be the most well-known in Chinese cuisine. They eat these spring rolls at the festival to celebrate the coming of spring. They’ll be on the table as a dinner dish, appetizer or just a plain snack. Of course we can’t forget dumplings, noodles, and another big party favorite, steamed fish and steamed chicken!

All this food serves the same purpose, which is to enjoy the New Year and the coming of spring! There are many ways to celebrate the Chinese New Year! Whether you kick it off with fireworks or a fish fry, there’s no way you won’t have fun!!

Sources- {for food/traditions} {for customs} {for animals/quote in par.1}