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Chinese New Year

Jan 27, 2014
A Chinese New Year parade.
Happy Chinese New Year!

The 2014 Chinese New Year is the Year of the Horse and is celebrated starting on January 31st. It celebrates the first day of the Chinese Lunar Calendar and is the most important yearly festival in Chinese culture. Each year is named after one of the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac.

Year of the Horse

This Chinese New Year, we are transitioning from the Year of the Snake to the Year of the Horse. People born in the Year of the Horse are supposed to be great communicators (that means you love to talk - and you're good at it!), smart, kind-hearted, charismatic, always trying to improve themselves, and cheerful but stubborn. Some famous horses include Oprah Winfrey, Kristen Stewart, Emma Watson and Kobe Bryant.

A traditional tiding on Chinese New Year
A traditional tiding on Chinese New Year
 

How to Prepare

Days before the New Year, families give their houses a good cleaning. Lots of people even paint their doors and windowpanes - usually red. Red is a popular New Year's color and it symbolizes happiness. People will also decorate their houses, pay debts, say some prayers and, of course, prepare tons of food. Early in the morning, children get cash wrapped in red paper packages. This money is supposed to bring good luck. Then the family goes door-to-door saying greetings before spending time with family and loved ones at home.

Red is a lucky color in Chinese culture
Red is a lucky color in Chinese culture
 

New Year's Eve Traditions

After the Chinese New Year's Eve dinner, you're not supposed to sweep anything out. In fact, brooms should be put away so you don't sweep out your luck. Knives are also put away, along with scissors, so you don't cut your luck. You can't take the trash out on New Year's Eve either, in case your luck goes out with the garbage. The Chinese New Year wouldn't be the same without firecrackers. Legend has it that by setting off firecrackers, evil energy is driven away and there will be peace and good fortune.

A traditional tiding on Chinese New Year
A traditional tiding on Chinese New Year
 

Have Your Say

Are you celebrating Chinese New Year? Tell us about it.

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Comments

maddy473

maddy473 wrote:

awesome
commented: Fri Jan 31, 2014

Jennifer24

Jennifer24 wrote:

I Bet Its Alot Of Fun
commented: Fri Jan 31, 2014

Turtle52

Turtle52 wrote:

Chū rù píng ān (peace and safety wherever you are in Mandarin)
commented: Fri Jan 31, 2014

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What Is the Chinese Year Based On?

  • The sun.
  • The cycles of the moon.
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