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Happy Chinese New Year

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Published: 7 Feb 2013      

It’s that time of year again, yep it’s New Years or should I say Chinese New Year.

The Chinese New Year is the biggest event in the Chinese world. The Chinese celebrate Chinese New Year for 15 days until the Chinese Lantern Festival. For the Chinese, New Year’s Eve is the day of family reunion. Most Chinese stay awake until hearing the sound of firecrackers to welcome the Chinese New Year similar to our ringing of the bells at midnight.

The 15 days are:

  • On the Chinese New Year Day, people like to greet each other with “Gong Xi Fa Chai”, which means "congratulations and make a fortune" to start the celebrations.
     
  • The 2nd  day of Chinese New Year is the Son-in-Law Day. Married women return to their mothers’ homes on this day.
     
  • The 3rd day of Chinese New Year is the Mice Wedding Day.
     
  • The 4th  day of Chinese New Year is the Welcome Home Day to the God of the Stove.
     
  • The 5th  day of Chinese New Year is the Welcome God of Wealth Day. Lots of business stores like to reopen on this day.
     
  • The 6th  day of Chinese New Year is the Clear-Water Master Day.
     
  • The 7th  day of Chinese New Year is The Human Day.
     
  • The 8th  day of Chinese New Year is The Completion Day.
     
  • The 9th  day of Chinese New Year is the Birthday of Jade Emperor, King of Heaven.
     
  • The 10th  day of Chinese New Year is The Eating Day.
     
  • The 11th  day of Chinese New Year is The Break Day.
     
  • The 12th  day of Chinese New Year is The Diarrhoea Day.
     
  • The 13th  day of Chinese New Year is The Death Anniversary of Kuan Yu.
     
  • The 14th  day of Chinese New Year is The Lantern Decoration Day. 
     
  • The 15th  day of Chinese New Year is The Lantern Festival.


The Chinese New Year Festival will end at Chinese Lantern Festival. But the displays of lantern shows will last for another 20 to 30 days.

The preparation to celebrate the Chinese New Year festival begins around the 8th day of the 12th  lunar month. The last day of the Chinese New Year festival is on the 15th  day of the first lunar month. That means it's required about three weeks to prepare the festival and 15 days to celebrate it.

Traditionally, a Chinese man works outside for a living and his wife takes care of everything inside the home. A month is not long enough for a housewife to clean the entire house, put up new interior and exterior decorations, prepare new clothes and gifts for all family members, and all the food for many the events.

You can image that the Chinese New Year festival combines Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day together.

This year it’s the year of the snake, but don’t worry - the snake is a good thing not bad.

 

Chinese New Year in London

The Chinese New Year festivities begin in the morning of the 10th February with a parade through theWest End toTrafalgar Square, where there's an opening celebration with stage performances and special guests.

A second stage onShaftesbury Avenuehosts performances from local community groups and schools. Over the years the stage has seen fashion shows, plays and even Chinese hip-hop artists.

Chinatownis at the centre of the New Year party. Food and craft stalls line the streets and a lion dance snakes through the crowds, stopping at restaurants to wish the owners good luck for the coming year.

 

Chinese New Year Schedule

10am:

The parade will begin inTrafalgar Squareand the colourful floats and beating of drums can be followed throughChinatownending inRupert Streetat 11am

12pm:

On the main stage inTrafalgar Square, the Deputy Mayor for Education and Culture, Munira Mirza, His Excellence Liu Xiao Ming and Stanley Tse, President of Chinatown, will commence the Dotting of the Eye ceremony, which will bring the dragons and lions to life

1pm-5.30pm:

Live entertainment on stage including performances by Hong Kong-born singer-songwriter Emmy The Great, the world-renowned Chen Brothers Flying Lion Dance, Paul Potts and performers fromGuangdongandSichuanProvinces

5.55pm:

A stunning fireworks display will mark the end of the day's celebrations

For more information on the celebration in London:

http://www.visitlondon.com/things-to-do/event/4733685-chinese-new-year-in-london