What is Lunar New Year?
Lunar New Year, also known as Chinese New Year, is a 15-day (or in modern times, 5-day) festival for families to be together. Lunar New Year is the most important holiday in Chinese culture, and the celebration takes place all over the world.
When is it?
There is no exact date for Lunar New Year in the C.E calendar, since it is based on the Lunar Calendar. In 2017, Lunar New Year is on Jan. 28.
Why is 2017 "Rooster's" year?
- The Lunar calendar is associated with Chinese zodiac, which has 12 animal signs. Each animal represents a year in a 12-year cycle. This year, we celebrate the year of Rooster.
What customs are there?
Clean: In tradition, bad luck gets swept away along with the dusts when people clean their houses before New Year Day.
Shop: Chinese wear new clothes on New Year Day, so shopping before the holidays is a must do.
Eat: Dumplings (Jiaozi) are eaten to bring wealth in the coming year. People put coins, candies and peanuts into some of the dumplings while making them to express different blessings. Coin represent wealth, candy for sweet life, and peanuts for health.
Family Dinner: On New Year's Eve, family gathers to eat dinner. On New Year Day, people visit their relatives and give out red envelopes.
- Red Envelopes: Also known as luck money, red envelopes are given to children by the adults and elderly as blessings.
What celebration are there for the end of the New Year holiday?:
The Lantern Festival takes place on the 15th day of New Year, and it marks the end of the celebrations. People send lanterns into the sky, the sea, and the rivers. On this day, families eat rice balls (TangYuan) to celebrate (or wish for) the reunion of family members.