Advertisement

'We are so glad to be back': Windsor-Essex celebrates Lunar New Year

Catherine Fung is the arts and culture event planning director with the Essex County Chinese Canadian Association. She says it is great to be celebrating Lunar New Year in public again after two years off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (TJ Dhir/CBC - image credit)
Catherine Fung is the arts and culture event planning director with the Essex County Chinese Canadian Association. She says it is great to be celebrating Lunar New Year in public again after two years off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (TJ Dhir/CBC - image credit)

Sunday marked the beginning of the Lunar New Year and the Chinese community of Windsor-Essex celebrated with a public showcase at Devonshire Mall.

The Essex County Chinese Canadian Association (ECCCA) set up an exhibition in front of The Bay where members of the Chinese community and passers-by stopped to take in the festivities.

"This is the sixth year that we are celebrating at Devonshire Mall," said Catherine Fung, arts and culture event planning director with the ECCCA. "Because of the pandemic, the last couple of years we didn't do it.

"We are so glad to be back again."

TJ Dhir/CBC
TJ Dhir/CBC

Cultural presentations took place, beginning with a dragon dance throughout the mall and ending back at The Bay. Further presentations took place roughly half an hour apart. Presentations included dances, fashion exhibitions and performances in music, kung fu and tai chi.

Two kids presented a kung fu exhibition, which included a sword.

"We selected the forms we felt would be a good fit for the song and performance," said 14-year-old Evan Day, who performed alongside his 16-year-old brother, Kevin. "There's many different weapons, many different empty hand forms, but we selected the swords because it's obviously a very interesting weapon."

TJ Dhir/CBC
TJ Dhir/CBC

Booths were also set up showcasing calligraphy and arts and crafts. Snacks and tea were also available.

Members of the Chinese community that gathered at Devonshire Mall were also impressed with the celebrations.

"It's quite incredible that you have all these people come together and share their culture," said Kevin Tran. "When I was a kid, I wouldn't have this. I'm really glad that we're able to collaborate and share our culture."

TJ Dhir/CBC
TJ Dhir/CBC

In Chinese culture, Lunar New Year is an occasion where family members come together, celebrate the new year and enjoy lots of food, said Stephanie Ly.

Another member of the community was adopted from China when she was 13 months old. She said that celebrating Lunar New Year is a way for her to connect with her culture.

"It's really nice to see events here in Windsor-Essex that remind me of China," said Anik Boulineau. "It's been nice because it reminds me a lot about where I'm from."

TJ Dhir/CBC
TJ Dhir/CBC

Fung said with this being the Year of the Rabbit, that means a positive year is ahead.

"According to the zodiac, the rabbit will bring longevity, peace and prosperity," said Stephen Tsui, president of the ECCCA.

TJ Dhir/CBC
TJ Dhir/CBC

Tsui said this year is also the year of hope.

"Hopefully we have peace; no more battles and no more wars," he said. "Everybody likes to see that."