The Lunar New Year


Photo via National Geographic

Harris Jamieson Morris, Staff Writer

    The Chinese New Year is a festival that celebrates the traditional lunar calendar and the coming of the new year. Additionally, this is a time coming out of winter and peaking into spring; hence the alternative name: The Spring Festival. This celebration is generally associated with dragon dances and fireworks, although customs greatly vary throughout the Greater China region. Each new year corresponds with one of the twelve animals that appear in Mandarin culture. These include everything from a rat to a dragon, this year being an ox. The animal of the year when a person is born holds significance about one’s character and fortune. The lunar calendar does not begin until late January or early February on the Georgian calendar; in 2021, this event will be on a Friday, February 12th. 

     When asked if he celebrated the lunar new year, sophomore Sean Trihn mentioned, “I have fond memories of my parents taking me to Chinatown in San Francisco on the lunar new year. The streets were filled with firecrackers and happy kids.” Trihn has no particular interest in celebrating the new year but was exuberant about his nostalgia and longing for a time that he once experienced. 

       Sophomore Maddie Keefe says, “I do not celebrate the Chinese new year, but I enjoyed the time when I was a child. My mom used to give me red envelopes telling me my fortune for the year of the rooster, and I still look up my new fortune to do this day.” Keefe expressed her amusement at the idea of celebrating a new season and the passing of time and welcoming the future. “I’m always open to new things and new cultures, and you may see me celebrating Chinese New Year next January.”