Chinese New Year and Lunar New Year Celebrations in Champaign-Urbana
One of the things that is great about Champaign-Urbana is the bounty of cultures represented here! And what better way to learn about other cultures than to celebrate with them. It seems like it was just the calendar new year, and now it’s time for another fun New Year occasion — the Lunar New Year.
Of course the Chinese New Year is the most well-known, but it is also the Korean and Vietnamese New Year; many Asian cultures celebrate the holiday, which is referred to more universally as the Lunar New Year.
A few fun facts:
1. The animal for 2019 is the pig (2018 was the dog).
2. The Chinese New Year is Tuesday, February 5 (this year, it changes every year), but it traditionally is celebrated for 15 days. On the 15th day there is the Lantern Festival. There are different traditions for each day of the New Year celebration.
3. Red is a popular color for Chinese New Year, as it symbolizes fortune and luck.
4. A traditional gift for children during Chinese New Year, red pockets, or 红包 (hóng bāo), are small red envelopes filled with lucky money.
5. The Korean New Year is also Tuesday, February 5. The Korean New Year holiday last three days.
Even if you don’t go to an official Lunar New Year or Chinese New Year celebration in town, here are some ways to honor and celebrate the holiday with family and friends:
- Taste the cuisine of China, Korea or Vietnam. Champaign-Urbana has an incredible number of Asian restaurants. Our readers have offered up their favorite places to get Chinese food as well as their favorite restaurants for Korean food.
- Make a craft. One popular item to decorate for Chinese New Year is a Good Luck character banner. Make one with these directions.
- Check out some books about Lunar New Year at your local library (Champaign Public Library and Urbana Free Library have plenty). Or, here are a few options to buy for your home collections:
A New Year Reunion
The Nian Monster
Golden Blooms: Celebrating Tet-Vietnamese Lunar New Year
There are often Lunar New Year and Chinese New Year celebrations in Urbana, Champaign, Mahomet and Monticello. We will keep adding to these, so check back:
Saturday, February 2, 2019
Urbana Free Library – 210 W. Green Street Urbana Time: 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Celebrate the Year of the Pig with crafts, music, and books! For children of all ages and their families.
Do you know of a Lunar New Year celebration we should add to this list? If you have one to add to our calendar, submit it here. If you want to add to this article, leave a comment below!