February is home to one of the most celebrated dates in the calendar – no, not Valentine’s Day, but Chinese New Year! Also known as ‘Spring Festival’, it’s China’s most important holiday and festival – with Friday 16th February also marking the celebration of the Year of the Dog.
If it’s your first time celebrating, you’ll know when Chinese New Year is happening – with red signaling good fortune in Chinese culture, you’ll notice all sorts of red decorations including lanterns, while red envelopes containing cash gifts are traditionally passed from senior relatives to younger family members.
Now we’ve got you excited, so get ready to join in the celebrations in your local city!
- Birmingham. The Chinese New Year Festival in Birmingham will be taking place on Sunday February 18th, from 11:30am to 4:30pm. Make sure you head over to the city’s Chinese Quarter, where there’s plenty of free celebrations going on plus a huge street party. Other activities you can expect include a fire act, lantern marking, lion dancing, funfair rides and delicious street food.
- Liverpool. This year will see a three-day celebration (Friday 16th to Sunday 18th February) take place in Liverpool’s Chinatown, with incredible light installations and music designed to tell the story of Liverpool’s Chinese culture and history – plus a pyrotechnic finale on Sunday. The Chinese New Year will also be part of the ‘China Dream’ season Liverpool is holding, showcasing Chinese arts from February right through to October 2018.
- Edinburgh. For those up in Scotland, Edinburgh is hosting a Chinese New Year Concert on Thursday 22nd February at 7:30pm at Usher Hall. Featuring an impressive lineup, tenor Han Peng will be making an appearance along with 2014 BBC Young Musician wind instrument finalist, British-Chinese flautist Daniel Shao, with the Edinburgh Symphony Orchestra.
- York. Check out the New Year Fete taking place on Sunday 18th February at the Exhibition Centre on Campus West, running from 1:30-5pm – where you can sample Chinese food, games, art and even a quiz! Later on in the evening, there will be a New Year Concert running from 7-9pm at the James College Roger Kirk Centre, where music lovers can enjoy hip hop, classical and visual art performances.
Student Roost is proud to be sponsoring the Chinese New Year festivities in York, so if you’re around, come say hi!