Top 5 Activities to Ring in the Chinese New Year

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Top 5 Activities to Ring in the Chinese New Year

Save the date! Chinese New Year is on January 28th, a perfect day to celebrate the arrival of the new lunar year.

Some background info on the New Year: 2017 is the Year of the Rooster. Chinese tradition believes that if you’re born in the Year of the Rooster, your most redeeming qualities are independence, humor, and honesty. Not sure how to celebrate this vibrant occasion? Don’t worry – we’ve complied a list of our Top 5 things to do in Calgary (oh, and make sure to bring your camera as there will be tons of colorful decorations and delectable dishes to take photos of!).

  • Go out for a bite to eat! If you’re anything like the Learn Photography Canada staff, then you have an overwhelming love for Chinese food. Some traditional Chinese meals include: bakkwa (a salty dried pork similar to beef jerky), love letters (cookies made from eggs and coconut milk) and nian gao (sticky rice cake). Although it can be difficult to find authentic Chinese food outside of China, there are a few Calgary restaurants that do offer authentic dishes, such as: 1 Pot which specializes in hot pot (which is a kind of stew made up of vegetables, seafood and sliced meat) or Silver Dragon Restaurant which serves some of our favourite dishes including long noodles, pork dumplings, and shrimp rolls.
  • Visit the Chinese Cultural Centre. The centre is located on the north-eastern side of downtown Calgary with a mission to offer cultural activities, arts shows, and quality programs to the public. On February 11th, there will be a Lantern Display and indoor bazaar with Chinese performances. The centre will wrap up the Chinese festivities with a talent show and fundraiser gala on February 12th.

  • Attend a New Year’s gala. The Sien Lok 48th Annual Chinese New Year Gala is but one of many luxury events occurring throughout the city. Entertainment kicks off with live music and is followed by a dance reception, cocktails, and food. Just remember that the dress code for this event is formal or traditional Chinese. Choose to wear red if you’re indecisive because in Chinese culture, red symbolizes happiness, good luck, and joy.
  • Watch traditional Chinese dancing! The Chinese New Year Lion Dance is taking place on Saturday January 28th in Calgary’s East Village. In the lion dance, performers mimic a lion’s movement in vibrant lion costumes. Before or after the dance, stick around to sample a variety of Chinese pastries and drink Chinese green tea.
  • Shop around downtown Chinatown. There will be tons of vendors and markets selling everything from traditional Chinese clothing and jewelry to take-home meals. This is the perfect time to snoop around for some Valentine’s gifts as well (especially because it gives you a reason to go out and shop in secrecy).

We encourage you to get out and enjoy as many activities as you can. If you are planning to do some photography at these events, make sure you pack extra camera batteries 😉

Happy New Year and Happy shooting!


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