BY TINA HENNESSEY
SC Staff Writer
East Stroudsburg University celebrated the Chinese New Year on Friday, February 7. Students gathered and enjoyed food, entertainment, and prizes in celebration of the year of the horse.
The Chinese New Year Party was hosted by the ESU Chinese Club in Lower Dansbury.
This year’s Chinese New Year was January 31—which began the Chinese year 4712. ESU’s celebration was originally scheduled for the week prior, but was canceled due to inclement weather.
In the Chinese year, the months are calculated with the lunar calendar, so the darkest day falls on the beginning of each month.
The Chinese New Year celebration traditionally goes for the first 15 days of the month. Because of the length of the holiday, people will take off weeks from work in order to prepare and celebrate.
This year is the year of the Horse. According to legend, Buddha named a year after each of the 12 animals that came to him on the Chinese New Year.
In addition, the people that are born in the animal’s year would obtain some of the qualities of the animal. Some of the horse qualities are cheerful, skillful with money, and perceptive.
During the festivities, everyone wears red clothing and incorporates the color red in decorations and gifts.
Fireworks and a lantern festival are also part of the New Year celebration.
The lantern festival takes place the first lunar month on the fifteenth.
The lanterns can be painted with anything from birds, animals, flower, zodiac signs, or even a scene from history.
Part of the festival is a dragon dance. The dragon is usually made from silk, paper, and bamboo and can be 100 feet long.
Because the Chinese New Year is based around families coming together, many of the Chinese people that immigrated to the United States come together through neighborhoods and create and celebrate New Year festivities together. This includes the dragon dance and even a parade.
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