Celebrate Year of the Snake
Published: Sunday, January 27, 2013 at 4:05 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 27, 2013 at 12:50 p.m.
Are you cleaning your house and sweeping away any ill fortune to make way for good luck?
If you are, you're no doubt preparing for the Chinese New Year, which begins Feb. 10.
The holiday that spans two weeks marks the end of the winter season.
It's the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays, and sometimes it's referred to as the "Lunar New Year" because the Chinese calendar reflects both sun and moon cycles. It's also known as the Spring Festival.
The rituals for the celebration vary widely, but they include adorning windows and doors with red-colored decorations, signaling themes of good fortune, happiness, wealth and longevity.
On the eve of the Chinese New Year is a feast with pig, duck, chicken and sweet delicacies, and the evening typically ends with a show of fireworks.
An important ritual of the holiday for many is gift giving. Gifts include boxes of oranges, orange trees and the Ang-poh, little red packets with new currency inside.
These packets are often the best part of the Chinese New Year celebration for children.
The Chinese New Year 2013 is the year of the snake, also known as the serpent, which is one of the 12-year cycle of animals that appear in the Chinese zodiac.
Activities in San Francisco and the North Bay include:
The Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco, Saturday, Feb. 23 at 5:15 to 8 p.m. The entire celebration includes two major fairs, the Chinese New Year Flower Fair and the Chinatown Community Street Fair. For details on all events, visit www.sanfranciscochinatown.com.
A local celebration for the Chinese New Year, organized by the Redwood Empire Chinese Association, is on Saturday, Feb. 23 at the Veterans Memorial Building, 1351 Maple Ave.
Doors open at 5 p.m. and a buffet dinner is served at 6 p.m. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children.
For more information, visit www.recacenter.org.
— Peg Melnik
All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.