Chinese New Year – The Year of the Dog

Written by: Shihao Cai

Traditions of the new year

As everyone knows, Chinese New Year is the most important celebration in China. According to the Chinese tradition, it’s the first day of the new year in the Chinese Lunar calendar. It is an important holiday for Chinese people to commemorate their ancestors and to god, also to reunite the whole extended family members and have a big feast to demonstrate their good wishes for the better future. As the popularity of this festival grows, more and more countries have started to celebrate during the Chinese new year days. In this year, the Chinese new year begins on 16th of February and ended on 2nd of March, therefore the year of the dog has begun.  

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Chinese new year in ISS

During the Chinese new year, ISS also organized some special events to celebrate this great festival. For this the new year, canteen starts providing fresh oranges for students and teachers. In Chinese word, orange is written as “桔”, it’s similar to another Chinese word “吉”, it means happiness and luck in Chinese. That is why orange is one of the fruit people must have at this time.

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ISS invited a group of lion dance dancer to our campus and provided a wonderful lion dance show. The lion dance is a very important creature of the new year, it has a long time history. In ancient China, people were afraid of the invisible devils which bring disasters and illness to people. Back then, there was an ancient monster amongst the Chinese legends, which looks like a lion. So in order to have a cheerful and safe new year, people dress up like the ancient monster to scare the devils and keep them away. As time pass, it became a traditional dance. Every Chinese Lunar new year, people would dress up as lions and start dancing, hoping to have a great time during the new year.

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Nowadays the Chinese new year is no longer a festival which for Chinese people only, more and more people start celebrating during this period and having a memorable time with their family and friends.  

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