Chinese New Year

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Tony Yin writes, The Chinese New Year, which will be on February 8th this year, is the most important of all traditional Chinese holidays.

The Chinese New Year, which will be on February 8th this year, is the most important of all traditional Chinese holidays. Outside of China, this important holiday is celebrated in many east Asian countries include Koreans, Mongolians, Nepalese, Bhutanese, Vietnamese, Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and other countries with significant Chinese populations. This day marks the first day of the year based on the lunar calendar used in ancient China. Some of the most traditional ways of celebrating this huge festival are family reunions, eating dumplings, and lighting off firecrackers. Family reunion is the most important tradition since the New Year is a time of reunion. The large population and amounts of people working outside of their hometown in China cause a huge problem in China during the Chinese New Year. More interurban trips are taken in mainland China in this 40-day period than the total population of China.The most popular dish in China during the New Years is Dumplings. This delicious food is eaten traditionally everywhere China because the preparation is similar to packaging luck inside the dumpling, which is later eaten.Fireworks are usually the best activity for kids just like me. Firecrackers are usually strung on a long fused string so it can be hung down. Each firecracker is rolled up in red papers, as red is auspicious, with explosive powder in its core. All kinds of unique firecrackers light the dark skies and the loud noises are everywhere as families happily play with them. The lighting of firecrackers also signifies a joyous occasion and has become an integral aspect of Chinese New Year.The Chinese New Year is a great time for both kids and adults as they have endless fun during this 15 day festival. This holiday, marked by activities like Dragon dances, fireworks, family gathering, family meal, visiting friends and relatives, giving red envelopes, decorations are definitely the best time of the year. This year is the year of the rat and below is a chart of the dates and zodiac symbols for the Chinese New Year. AnimalDatesRatFebruary 19, 1996February 7, 2008OxFebruary 7, 1997January 26, 2009TigerJanuary 28, 1998February 14, 2010RabbitFebruary 16, 1999February 3, 2011DragonFebruary 5, 2000January 23, 2012SnakeJanuary 24, 2001February 10, 2013HorseFebruary 12, 2002January 31, 2014SheepFebruary 1, 2003February 19, 2015MonkeyJanuary 22, 2004February 8, 2016RoosterFebruary 9, 2005January 28, 2017DogJanuary 29, 2006February 16, 2018PigFebruary 18, 2007February 5, 2019

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