Saturday, January 14, 2012

Asian New Year's: The Year of the Dragon

Wisdom Quarterly; Pacific Asia Museum
A naga king or royal dragon (Zensquared/

January 23rd, 2012 marks the official New Year on the ancient lunar calendar(s) still in partial use throughout the world and in Asia in particular. This is the Buddhist year 2555.

This is the Year of the Dragon on the Chinese calendar, who may be returning on Dec. 21, 2012 as Quetzalcoatl, the royal flying serpent or naga in Buddhist cosmological terms.

New Year's is celebrated in the US between Jan. 14th through Feb. 4th. In fact, many modern countries, remnants of kingdoms and empires, have their own calendar and exact New Year's Day.

Anchorage Daily News via BuddhistArtNews; below, Chinese ceremony with dragon (

Buddhists throughout Asia celebrate according to national calculations rather than the ancient Indian (Afghan, Gandharan, or Nepalese) New Year's celebration.

China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia (and all of Indochina) have their own customs and ways of marking the new year. But all include a visit to the local Buddhist temple. But instead of good luck rituals or making donations to support monastics, most Americans visit to meditate.

Lunar New Year Festival
January 14, 2012 11:00 am to 5:00 pm

Ring in the Year of the Dragon with Pacific Asia Museum's second annual Lunar New Year Festival!

There are lot of activities for families to enjoy (and kids ages 11 and under always get in free): performances, crafts, demonstrations, and more in the museum's beautiful courtyard, auditorium, and fully tented parking lot.

Visiting artists from Jiangsu province, China, will be present giving demonstrations and performances. Refreshments available from several food trucks including the Nom Nom Truck, the Boba Truck, and Paradise Cookies. See


  • 11:00 am Lion Dance by San Gabriel Valley Chinese Cultural Association
  • 11:30 Opening Remarks
  • 12:00 pm Puppet Performance by Yangzhou Puppet Troupe
  • 1:00 Traditional Korean Dance by Kim Eung Hwa Korean Dance Academy
  • 1:30 Sumo demonstration with Sumo champion Byamba and USA Sumo
  • 2:00 Traditional Chinese Dance by Shin Dance Company
  • 2:15 "K-pop" Korean Break Dance by Floor Moverz
  • 2:30 Dragon Dance by San Gabriel Valley Chinese Cultural Association
  • 3:00 Taiko Drumming by Taiko Center of Los Angeles
  • 3:30 Puppet Performance by Yangzhou Puppet Troupe
This event is made possible in part by Wells Fargo, Jiangsu Province and the Ministry of Culture of the People's Republic of China, the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Los Angeles, Beauty Media Inc., and ICN TV Network. Media sponsors include KPCC and Pasadena Weekly.

1 comment:

Dalek said...

Welcome to the year of the dragon, and Happy New Year to all!