Chinese New Year: The Year of the Goat

Sunday, March 1st, 2015
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Students paper-cutting

The 2015 Chinese New Year was held on Thursday, February 19 this year. Uniquely, the CHS Chinese Club decided to not only to dedicate one day to be celebrating this holiday but a whole week! The week consisted of doing things such as hosting a celebration in the gym for all of CHS to attend, a chance for all club members to eat “homemade” dumplings, a demonstration of the art of paper cutting for all students and staff, a student demonstration of a Chinese dance and Kung-Fu, Mrs. Wang presenting Fung-Shui to any student or staff interested, a video viewing of the Chinese New Year Gala, and finally a demonstration of calligraphy to anyone interested. The events being helds purposes are to inform student and staff members about the culture surrounding the Chinese New Year and why it is such a big deal. As regards to the events chosen, club supervisor Li Laoshi said, “I chose specifically as I felt that those activities best exemplified Chinese aspects/personality traits of patience, diligence,  and respect.”

 

For those of you who do not know much about the Chinese New Year and the culture around it here are a couple fun facts to better your understanding. Each year the day of the celebration changes to any date between January 21 and February 20th. Unlike the United States in which has a single designated day each year to celebrate the New year. To continue, one third of the worlds population celebrates this holiday meaning that China is not the only country who celebrates this holiday. Countries such as Indonesia, The Philippines, Vietnam and many more all come together to celebrate this day. Also, each year begins a new animal zodiac year, with this years animal being the Goat. Past years consisted of a monkey, rooster or even a dragon. A Zodiac symbol is much alike what we would call our birthstone, it is determined by when you are born, where and determines your so called “faith”. Many people in the US are not very familiar with the culture behind the Chinese New Year yet over 3.5 million people travel to China each year to celebrate this event filled festival.

 

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Principal Groh poses for a picture with Chinese club officers Conor Murray and Dan Bresnahan

The main goal of the celebration in CHS was to inform the students and staff about the Chinese culture and why the New Year is such a big deal. Club Member Luke Ciccarelli said,“It was fun to learn about how Chinese celebrate the New Year and how it differed from the United States New Year and I had a great time learning how to paper cut.” Another club member, Evan Gavalakis, said that “All in all, I had a very good time.  I was more exposed than I had ever been to how important the Chinese New Year was to the Chinese heritage.  Just taking Chinese class alone was not allowing me to understand the roots of the Chinese New Year.  I loved all the food and all the entertainment and I thought that it was a well organized and well executed series of events to really explain the whole importance of the Chinese New Year. And I had no idea that the dumplings meant good luck!” All in all the representation of an authentic Chinese new year at CHS was well went over the standards. From paper cutting to Kung Fu to the delicious feast of Dumplings (good luck), Noodles (long life), and Chicken (auspicious), the 2015 Chinese New Year celebration at CHS was a success to say the least.