In with the horse
Calgary’s Chinese Cultural Centre held Chinese New Year celebrations to say goodbye to the snake and welcome the year of the wooden horse.
When the rain came down in June of 2013 its impact had devastating effects on many neighbourhoods across Calgary.
Chinatown was one of the neighbourhoods that was considered a state of emergency. They had a tough rebuild — with local businesses suffering from extensive flood damage.
The New Year celebrations that took place at the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre on Jan. 25 and 26 celebrated not only the year of the horse but signified a rebirth of the neighbourhood.
Vivian Morgan, who is in charge of media relations with Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre, said that the year of the horse can be seen as “…very active, and they are fast so, people are hoping this year they will have a speedy success and a very healthy and active [start] for this year.”
This message was apparent in the bun tree — a towering 15-foot structure that took centre stage in the foyer of the Cultural Centre. The Chinese buns (yes, the edible kind) decorated the tree and were stamped with “Ping An” (safe and sound), ‘’Ji Xiang” (Propitious) and ‘’Fu” (Good Fortune).
Another attraction was the Grand Show of the Dragon that took place at noon on Sunday. Despite the frosty temperatures, crowds of people gathered to watch the dragon slither around the west entrance of the centre. The dance was accentuated by colourful lions that created a memorable experience for both young and the old.
The rest of Sunday brought demonstrations of martial arts and a series of performances that helped showcase traditional Chinese dance and performance art.
The God of Good Fortune was also on hand to offer insight on 2014. People lined up to receive their fortune and grab a picture.
With leaving the past behind, the New Year is all about looking forward into the future. This celebration, filled with community and good cheer, gave a good start on what’s to come for the year of the horse.