Tag Archives: Lunar New Year Parade

Lunar New Year – The Lantern Festival

The Lantern Festival

The Lantern Festival, also called Yuan Xiao Festival. It honors deceased ancestors on the 15th day of the first month (Yuan) of the lunar calendar. The Lantern Festival aims to promote reconciliation, peace, and forgiveness. The holiday marks the first full moon of the new lunar year and the end of the Chinese New Year. During the festival, houses are festooned with colorful lanterns, often with riddles written on them; if the riddle is answered correctly, the solver earns a small gift.

The Lantern Festival may originate as far back as the Han dynasty (206 bce to 220 ce), when Buddhist monks would light lanterns on the 15th day of the lunar year in honor of the Buddha. The rite was later adopted by the general population and spread throughout China and other parts of Asia. A legend concerning the festival’s origin tells the tale of the Jade Emperor (You Di), who became angered at a town for killing his goose. He planned to destroy the town with fire, but he was thwarted by a fairy who advised the people to light lanterns across the town on the appointed day of destruction. The emperor, fooled by all the light, assumed the town was already engulfed in flames. The town was spared, and in gratitude the people continued to commemorate the event annually by carrying colorful lanterns throughout the town.

Festival celebrations also include lion and dragon dances, parades, and fireworks.

Each year for Lunar New Year, in SF the Chinatown area comes to life with Cherry blossoms, and preparations for the upcoming Lunar New Year parade.THIS YEAR: Chinese New Year is on Tuesday, February 5, 2019. It is so much fun to see this parade and very loud too.  I have been able to walk in the parade with my company 3 times, that is thrilling – we were surrounded by thousands of clapping spectators,  stilt walkers, Lions, dragons, high schools, martial artists and local civic groups. — the editor

 

Lion Dance… at work

Understanding other cultures is a big deal. When we are part of a diverse group, when work with our customers better. We understand more; hopefully we develop empathy and perspective. Practicing Diversity is a core value of ours. It is also a requirement for many employers all over the world. For me, the best way to learn is to ….DOI!

We will have a fellow team member teach us how to be a Lion and we may participate in a Lion Dance. This is happening on January 26 and February 10. On February 11, Wells Fargo will have a float and we will walk in the San Francisco Lunar New Year Parade. WF has been a long-time supporter of this great event. This will be my 2nd time… I love this energetic happy parade.

I am so excited about a lion dance, I looked it up. There is a school in SF, we could learn more!  Here is the link.  Maybe they could be a SPEAKER at one of our Asian Connection events. This is so interesting. This is the ABOUT US – take a look!  There is more than one kind:

Traditional Lion dance

A great showcase of Southern Lion Dancing is our backbone. With props including crabs, scorpions, water pots, benches, and staggering tall wooden beams, the dancing lion comes alive to overcome these obstacles.

Flying Lion dance

The most modern and advanced movements in this art can be seen in this act.  Clambering over obstacles, leaping through the air and stepping across danger, this lion dance act is a must see.

Northern Lion Dance

Also known as the “Buk See” or northern lion, this dog-like dancing lion performs life like movements including acrobatic steps and jumps.

Walking in the San Francisco Lunar New Years Parade was exciting, we saw many “Lions” and also dozens of high school and college Marching Bands. There were gymnasts performing, local non-profits walking (many that we volunteer with!), even stilt walkers in the parade, many Lions and dozens of floats. It was a very happy time, children and adult spectators were cheering and clapping. We were cheering and clapping too.