Chinese New Year: Celebrate with firecrackers, yummy dumplings, and a sharp-toothed monster

A long time ago, there was an evil monster named Nian, who had sharp teeth and horns. Every New Year’s eve, he would come down from the mountain to terrify the local villagers. They would have to flee to avoid his ferocious attacks.

One year, the villagers met an old man. He looked like a beggar in old, torn, and dirty clothes. He said he was not afraid of Nian and had a plan.

On the next New Year’s eve, he put on brand new red clothes and set off many loud firecrackers. The monster was so afraid he fled to other mountains far away. Now, every new year the villagers would wear new clothes and light noisy firecrackers. Nian never returned.

This custom has continued to this day. Chinese New Year celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar. Also known as the Spring Festival or Lunar New Year, it is the most important holiday for Chinese people. During this time, people travel back home no matter how far away they might be. We put on new clothes, clean our homes and throw away old things we don’t want anymore.

My family, along with Chinese families everywhere, get together for a big New Year’s Eve dinner. Dumplings are the most common dish and my favorite. My family makes delicious dumplings, usually filled with meat. We also visit relatives and friends. If you are a child, like me, they give you red envelopes. Red envelopes are also called “lucky money,” because we can stay up with the adults until midnight. In Mandarin this get together is called Shou Sui.

The Spring Festival lasts about 15 days. Each year it is named after a different animal in the Chinese zodiac. This year it will begin on Jan. 25, 2020 and be the Year of the Rat.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Even in ‘worst-case scenario,’ Westerner Park can now operate until early 2021, says CEO

Mike Olesen is grateful for $2 million from the City of Red Deer

Dental services for developmentally disabled shuttered in Red Deer

Marwayne Dental Clinic closes to Red Deer and central Alberta patients

Red Deer building permits on the rise

Building permit applications returned to a seasonal average after slowing in May,… Continue reading

Three patients dead: Edmonton hospital declares full COVID-19 outbreak

EDMONTON — A hospital in Edmonton is no longer admitting patients due… Continue reading

CMHC reports annual pace of housing starts in Canada increased in June

OTTAWA — Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says the annual pace of… Continue reading

Army helicopter training near Rocky Mountain House this weekend

Three CH-146 Griffon Helicopters will be training in Central Alberta over the… Continue reading

Fun and Flowers: Rimbey and Area Love My Garden Tour this July

“Every garden is as unique as the gardener who created them.”

Opinion: Restart our economic engine by supporting oil and gas

“The country isn’t going to recover unless the oil and gas sector… Continue reading

Opinion: COVID costs need restraining

Bill Morneau muttered it best himself on Wednesday as he tabled documents… Continue reading

UPDATE: Alberta RCMP Major Crimes Unit investigating suspicious death in Leduc

Death of Jacob Michael Chitze, 19, ruled a homicide; RCMP seek video of house party altercation.

Fateful meeting has Vancouver’s Stuart Macdonald on Korn Ferry Tour

Stuart Macdonald wasn’t quite sure what Golf Canada’s Derek Ingram wanted to… Continue reading

Oprah, Lionsgate to help adapt The 1619 Project for film, TV

Oprah Winfrey and Lionsgate are partnering with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones… Continue reading

Most Read