This Saturday February 10, marks the start of year 4722 on a Chinese Calendar and the Lunar New Year of the Dragon, those born in 2024, 2012, 2000, 1988, 1976, 1964, 1952, are celebrating ‘their birth sign year’. The fifth of the 12 zodiac animals, the dragons are majestic, ambitious and powerful. Their confidence and daring persona makes them considered to be natural leaders, inspiring with passion and enthusiasm.
Lunar New Year, Chinese New Year or Spring Festival is one of the most important events for many Asian cultures as millions make visits to their home countries, towns and family, in the coming days to celebrate the arrival of the new year. Through the decades, the Asian diaspora has carried celebrations and traditions with them around the globe. With Metro Vancouver’s large Asian community, particularly Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese communities, our cities are busy with celebratory events for those who can’t take the trip home, or are returning here to visit family. Many of the region’s malls and centres are hubs of entertainment and activities. Here’s a few of the other events happening to help celebrate the Year of the Dragon:
Taste of Chinatown: The Vancouver Chinatown Foundation presents a three-day festival, February 9-11, celebrating the Lunar New Year featuring culinary delights, walking tours – A Wok Around Chinatown with Bob Sung, special promotions at merchants around the neighbourhood, illuminating lights and lanterns, and exciting prize draws! Look up, so you don’t miss the Lunar New Year Special Projection, displayed above the Chinatown Storytelling Centre on the wall of the Chin Wing Chun Society building from 6 pm to 11 pm throughout the Taste of Chinatown
Chinatown Storytelling Centre: Offers 50% off admission through the weekend with a host of family activities; February 10th from 11am-1pm: Colour your very own laser-cut dragon magnet to attract prosperity, protection, and good health for the year ahead. February 11th from 11am-4pm: The God of Wealth will be sharing blessings for all and passing out lucky treats for the little ones.
Spring Festival Parade: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary, the Year of the Dragon Chinatown Spring Festival Parade to be held on February 11, 2024, getting underway at 11am at the Millennium Gate in Chinatown before proceeding along East Pender Street, Gore Street, and concluding at the intersection of Keefer Street and Carrall Street, expect thousands to line the streets to watch the parade festivities.
Chinese Canadian Museum: Saturday and Sunday at the Museum enjoy tours (in English and Chinese) of the galleries in the Wing Sang Building, tastings and demonstrations including Calligraphy Demo with Master Lau or Printmaking with Marlene Yuen
Spring Festival Cultural Fair: February 11, 2024, from 2pm to 4pm, with free admission, at the Chinese Cultural Centre, and Dr. Sun Yat-sen Garden Courtyard (50 East Pender Street) the Spring Festival Cultural Fair continues the Lunar New Year celebration featuring a variety of multicultural artistic performances, including drama, singing, dancing, and other colorful programs, along with Lunar New Year celebration booths.
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden: RSVP to visit Sunday, February 11th, 12pm – 5pm and celebrate the Year of the Dragon by engaging in the art of storytelling, delve into the beauty of calligraphy, discover your fortune, and make heartfelt wishes beneath the glowing Wishing Tree. Attend a Lunar New Year Let It Glow! Light Engraving Workshop – Immerse yourself in the art of engraving with expert instructors and customize your own Lunar New Year-themed light stands!
Lunar Fest 2024: Lunar Fest brings craft workshops, arts market, artists talks, Dradancing, entertainment, lanterns celebrations pop up all around the city, outdoors at Vancouver Art Gallery, Granville Island, and Pendulum Gallery over two weekends; February 10-11 and February 17-18 with the LunarFest concert taking place February 13 at The Orpheum Theatre.
Lunar New Year Splash: LNY Splash brings together culture, visual arts, and the vibrant local scenery to welcome the Year of the Dragon. Following the free-flying spirit of the majestic beasts, LNY Splash presents public art installations starting February 9 at Downtown Vancouver, West End and South Granville neighbourhoods as well as a selection of films at VIFF February 16-18 FlyOver: Soar Over Taiwan takes flight only until February 11th at select times, leave your passport at home and explore the spectacular beauty and some of the island nation’s most iconic sites, from right here in downtown Vancouver.
The Flame: Lunar New Year Edition: For one night only, February 10th, Gateway Theatre in Richmond welcomes The Flame: Lunar New Year Edition, a special performance of the popular storytelling series. Join Deborah Williams, the award-winning actor and one of the creators of Mom’s the Word, and talented local storytellers for an evening of “True Stories Told by People Who Lived Them” celebrating themes of the Lunar New Year. Featuring talented local storytellers and a musician, this Flame will be in English with occasional dialogue and songs in the storytellers’ mother tongue.
Bun Fun New Year: February 18th at Carousel Theatre, join in A Five Blessings Collective Production Co-Presented by Gateway Theatre and Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre to celebrate Lunar New Year with tales from our bunny friends at the Bao household. In the midst of preparing for the lunar new year family feast, twinned bunnies Bunnifer and Bunnithy learn the true meaning of new year festivities and a couple of…interesting… recipes along the way.