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Everything you need to know about Chinese New Year 2017

PUBLISHED: 14:42 28 January 2017 | UPDATED: 09:26 29 January 2017

Chinese New Year celebrations at Riverside, Norwich. 

Jimmy Pun with the Chinese dragons



. 
Photo: Nick Butcher

Chinese New Year celebrations at Riverside, Norwich. Jimmy Pun with the Chinese dragons . Photo: Nick Butcher

EDP© 2004

From what animal is being celebrated to where in Norwich you can join in the festivities, here’s your guide to the Spring Festival:

Celebrating the Chinese New Year at City Hall in Norwich, Lions and Unicorns dance for the celebrations. Photo: Simon FinlayCelebrating the Chinese New Year at City Hall in Norwich, Lions and Unicorns dance for the celebrations. Photo: Simon Finlay

What is the Chinese New Year?

The Chinese New Year, known in modern Chinese as the Spring Festival, is marked by the lunisolar calendar which establishes days, months and years according to astronomical phenomena.

The first day of the New Year changes each year, but always falls on a new moon between January 21 and February 20, with the celebration ending on the following full moon.

This year the celebrations will kick off on Saturday, January 28.

Chinese New Year celebrations outside city hall, Norwich. 
Photo: Nick ButcherChinese New Year celebrations outside city hall, Norwich. Photo: Nick Butcher

What animal is taking over?

Each year is related to an animal sign, last year it was the turn of the monkey but now is the time of the Rooster, which is the tenth sign in the Chinese zodiac.

There are a 12 signs in total (rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig) and which one you are depends on the year you were born.

The years of the rooster include 1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005 and 2017 and those born at these times are characterised as being intelligent, independent, hard-working and energetic.

Celebrities born in the year of the Rooster include Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Elton John and Natalie Portman.

What happens during the New Year?

Celebrations take place all over the world and usually last for 15 days, during which time families come together to relax and wish for a lucky and prosperous coming year.

A variety of traditional activities take place during this period, including setting off firecrackers, distributing money in red paper envelopes to bestow happiness, eating lucky foods such as fish and dumplings and dragon dances.

Where can you celebrate in Norwich?

The Lord Mayor and Sheriff of Norwich are hosting a special evening in celebration of the Chinese New Year on Tuesday, January 31 at Riverbank Chinese Buffet restaurant in Norwich from 7pm.

Tickets cost £20 per person, the price of which includes an all-you-can eat Chinese feast and the event will also feature a charity auction in aid of It’s On The Ball. Prizes on offer will include a Decléor facial at John Lewis and afternoon tea with the Lord Mayor in her parlour.

To book tickets email info@itsontheball.org

• Are you celebrating the Chinese New Year? Let us know in the comments below.


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