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KUNG HEE FAT CHOY – Happy Chinese New Year!

Chinese New Year

Honolulu’s Chinatown District Rings in the Year of the Earth Dog with an Exciting Chinese New Year Celebration

 

Kung Hee Fat Choy—Happy Chinese New Year! According to Chinese astrology, life follows a 12-year cycle in which each year is accorded a zodiac animal. On Feb. 16, 2018, we welcome in the Year of the Dog.

A new year always brings new hopes and opportunities. This is especially welcome, in 2018 since 2016 (Year of the Monkey) and 2017 (Year of the Rooster) were marked by fiery elements that brought some disharmony and impulsive behavior to the world. The Year of the Dog is expected to bring prosperity, especially to those who—like the best of dogs—work hard and communicate well. Experts predict that people who demonstrate generosity to others will be rewarded with the most benefits during the year. Good dog!

To be more exact, 2018 is the Year of the Earth Dog. Bear with us on some background. The Chinese calendar rotates in 60-year cycles based on 12 zodiac animal years and five element years. The elements are wood, fire, earth, metal and water. Contrasted with the fire of the last two years, the Year of the Dog is an earth year, which signifies a shift to stability. If this is true, we should look forward to an earthier, more grounded 12 months.

Oahu is home to one of the most vibrant Chinatowns in the United States, and the Year of the Earth Dog will be celebrated joyously (and noisily) in Honolulu’s Chinatown with a week of events, beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 9, at the Chinatown Cultural Plaza at 100 N. Beretania St. Sponsored by the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii, the annual celebration is a family-oriented event, with lion and dragon dances, exciting firecracker explosions (to chase away all the bad spirits who fouled things up in the last year), craft booths and traditional Chinese foods. Among the meals that bring good luck in the new year is jai monk food, a vegetarian dish that visiting foodies will enjoy.

Accompanied by the lion-dance groups, the 2018 Narcissus Queen and her court will be visiting stores in Chinatown between 6 and 9 p.m.to bestow blessings and even more good luck to the upcoming business year.

Parking is available in the Chinatown Cultural Plaza and numerous municipal parking lots in Chinatown, but come early to secure your spot and avoid the crowds that are drawn to this popular annual event.

 

Photos by Brett Uprichard; Shutterstock; Darrell Ishii

 

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