SACRAMENTO, CA - The Chinese New Year started Monday and big celebrations around the world, including Sacramento and San Francisco.
There are plenty of ways people are celebrating the year of the Dragon. Everything from sampling Chinese food like dumplings and egg rolls to wearing traditional Chinese attire. And with a large Chinese population in Sacramento, you can expect to encounter some celebrations in the state capital.
The year of the Dragon is a big deal. It is considered to be the most respected sign of the 12-year Chinese astrological cycle. Anyone born during these years is considered to be part of the auspicious group destined for wealth and success: 1904, 1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, or 2000.
Dr. Tom Bhe is the Vice President of fundraising for the Chinese New Year Cultural Association in Sacramento. One of the big events his organization is gearing up for is an all-day New Year's celebration on February 18th at the Scottish Rite Masonic Center. They will have traditional lion dances, Kung Fu demonstrations, and Chinese painting sessions.
Dr. Bhe says a big part of the Chinese New Year is attitude.
"On the New Year, you wear new clothes, and then you have to be happy that new year day, you cannot get angry, and all the good things."
San Francisco is ranked among the best places to celebrate, along with Las Vegas, New York, and Seattle. The City by the Bay has a huge parade planned in a couple of weeks with 22 floats and 6,000 participants.
Luck and encouragement of good fortune to others has a lot to do with the Chinese New Year. It's easy for you to do that with friends or relatives. All you have to do is pass along chocolate or money, or a non-traditional lottery ticket, in a red envelope.
The Chinese New Year lasts for 15 days,. Celebrations will continue into February.