The New Year’s Eve dinner is the most important dinner for Chinese. Normally this is the family reunion dinner, especially for those with family member away from home. In the New Year’s Eve dinner, normally fish will be served. Dumplings are the most important dish in northern china. These two dishes mean prosperous. Other dishes are depending on personal preference. The majority of Chinese will have New Year’s Eve dinner at home instead of restaurant.
Fireworks & Firecrackers
Fireworks & firecrackers are used to drive away the evil in China. Right at the 00:00 AM of the New Year’s Eve, means the First day of New Year in the Lunar Calendar, fireworks & firecrackers will be launched to celebrate the coming of the New Year as well as driven away the evil. It is believed that the person who launched the first Fireworks in the New Year will get good luck.
Lion dance & Dragon dance
Lion dance is a form of traditional dance in Chinese culture and other Asian countries in which performers mimic a lion’s movements in a lion costume. The lion dance is usually performed during the Chinese New Year and other Chinese traditional, cultural and religious festivals.
Dragon dance is a form of traditional dance and performance in Chinese culture. Like the lion dance it is most often seen in festive celebrations. The dance is performed by a team of dancers who manipulate a long flexible figure of a dragon using poles positioned at regular intervals along the length of the dragon. The dance team mimics the supposed movements of this river spirit in a sinuous, undulating manner. The dragon dance is often performed during Chinese New Year. Chinese dragons are a symbol of China, and they are believed to bring good luck to people, therefore the longer the dragon in the dance, the more luck it will bring to the community. The dragons are believed to possess qualities that include great power, dignity, fertility, wisdom and auspiciousness.
Shou Sui means after the New Year’s Eve dinner, family member will normally stay awake during the night. Some people just stay until the mid night, after the fireworks. According to tales and legends, there was a mythical beast called the “Year”. At the night of New Year’s Eve, the “Year” will come out to harm people, animals, and proprieties. Later people found that the “Year” is afraid of red color, fire, and loud sound. Therefore, at the New Year’s Eve night, people will launch fireworks, put on some fires, and stay awakes the whole night to fend of the “Year”.
Red packet is a red envelope with money in it, range from one to a few thousand Chinese Yuan. Usually the red racket is given by adults, especially married couple, and elderly to young children in the New Year days. It was believed that the money in the red packet will suppress the evil from the children, keep the children healthy, and long living.
New Year Markets
At the New Years days, a temporarily market will be setup mainly selling New Year goods, such as clothing, fireworks, decoration, foods, small arts, etc. and other stuffs to prepare for the New Year’s Eve. The market is usually decorated with a large amount of lanterns. This market will be ended at midnight of New Year’s Eve, as everyone will come home and enjoy the New Year’s party, reunion with their family.
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