Students celebrate Lunar New Year

Sonya Phillips, Of The Talon staff

The Chinese New Year, which is also referred to as the Lunar New Year, marks the beginning of the year based on the Lunar Calendar, as well as the beginning of spring. This year the Chinese new year fell on January 22. While it is most popular in Asia, the holiday is celebrated around the world by over a billion people, including sisters Senior Elaine Duan and Freshman Isabel Duan. 

The idea of the Chinese New Year, Elaine said, is to get rid of everything poor from the previous year and bring in positivity for the new year

“The main purpose of the Chinese new year is to remove the bad and old from the past year and welcome the new year,” Elaine said.  

Elaine said that Chinese new year is heavily celebrated in China like how Christmas is celebrated in America. A big tradition is to wear the color red because it symbolizes prosperity and satisfaction for the new year and brings you good luck

“It’s similar to the hype around Christmas. It’s the biggest holiday in China. You can make wishes for the coming year and it will come true. It’s also a tradition to wear red which symbolizes luck, happiness, and success,” Elaine said.

Isabel said that she is excited to have a chance to talk to her family in China each year as well as eat delicious foods she doesn’t get to have all of the time

“Each year I look forward to being around my family and Face Timing my family in China and being able to talk to them, also eating good desserts that we only get once or twice a year, like nian gao,” Isabel said. 

Elaine said that every year her family enjoys mooncakes which is a Chinese dessert that indicates success and harmony for her whole family

“Then we always get mooncakes on Chinese New Year as well which symbolizes prosperity and union for your entire family,” Elaine said.

For Isabel, receiving red envelopes from her parents that are filled with money is her favorite part of the holiday. The gifts indicate bringing optimism into the new year

“My favorite tradition is each year I go out to eat dinner with my family and we receive decorative red and gold envelopes filled with money. It symbolizes passing on good wishes for the new year,” Isabel said. 

Chinese New Year also brings the change of the Chinese zodiac, with 2023 being the year of the rabbit. Elaine said that every year her family discusses the zodiac sign and what it is said to bring into the new year.

“We talk about the new year according to the superstitions that surround whichever year it is, like this year is the year of the rabbit so it’s a year for hope, prosperity, and peace,” Elaine said.