The first new moon in the traditional Chinese calendar is cause for family gatherings, food, dance and general merriment in many countries, including China, Vietnam, Korea as well as the U.S.A. Here are some lunar new year events going on around Seattle. Welcome in the Year of the Rat!
11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8Chinatown-International District
The action on the main stage in Hing Hay Park starts with a lion dance, and includes an all-ages costume contest, in which children, adults, and pets vie to win recognition for the best cultural ensemble. Restaurants around the district will be participating in the food walk, in which participants can drop by, and pay $3 for a taste of something.
ALREADY HAPPENED FOR 2020:
11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 1Bellevue Square Center Court
Bellevue’s New Year festival includes a full-day of performances, including dance, music, opera, martial arts and calligraphy. Festival-goers can take in five different stations, each running running a variety of arts and crafts activities. Din Tai Fung and Barons Sino Kitchen and Bar will be handing out food samples until they run out. For more details on what to expect, visit the website.
2 p.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 1Grand Ridge Plaza, 1451 Highlands Dr NE, Issaquah
Dragon and lion dances and martial arts demonstrations are part of the outdoor festivities.
11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18 and Sunday, Jan. 19Fisher Pavilion and Armory, Seattle Center
A two-day celebration of Vietnamese and Vietnamese-American culture. On the schedule: lion dances, music, cooking demonstrations, a food-eating contest, children’s and adult’s fashion shows, Jeopardy games and a health fair.
2 p.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 18The Shops at the Bravern, 11025 NE 8th St, Bellevue
Featuring Dragon and Lion dances, flower arranging, lantern-making and Chinese Zodiac cotton candy making.
Noon to 1 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 19Uwajimaya Seatttle, 600 5th Ave South
Mak Fai Washington Kung Fu Club Lion Dance Team gives a free performance outside Uwajimaya.
Noon to 1 pm., Sunday, Jan. 19Uwajimaya Bellevue, 699 120th Ave NE, Bellevue
Tony Au International Lion Dance and Martial arts team gives a free performance of a traditional lion dance.
10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 25.Wing Luke Museum of the Asian-American Experience, 719 S King St
The action starts at 10:30 a.m. with a traditional lion dance on South King Street, complete with firecrackers. Then, for the price of museum admission, you can explore lunar new year traditions and make crafts. Admission is free for kids and students, but you should get tickets in advance, because it fills up.
Family-friendly portion 7 to 9:30 p.m. (21+ after) Saturday, Jan. 25Volunteer Park Conservatory
A public art party celebrating local Asian and Pacific Islander people.
1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25Central Washington University – Sammamish, 120 228 Ave. N.E., Sammamish
This free family event includes performances and a variety of educational booths, including calligraphy and crafts, games, tea ceremony, Korean drums and a photo booth.
Noon to 3 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 25Snoqualmie Valley YMCA/Community Center, 35018 SE Ridge St, Snoqualmie
Lion dancers, food trucks and kids’ activities are part of the celebrations.