2017 Lunar New Year
In collaboration with the Office of Matt Thistlethwaite MP and Bayside Council, the Confucius Institute at UNSW held Lunar New Year festivities on February 4 to celebrate the Year of the Rooster. Taking place at Dacey Gardens in Kingsford, local residents and families enjoyed a wide range of performances, including Chinese songs, traditional folk instruments, martial arts and traditional dance. The lion dancers were also a popular hit, delighting crowds with their acrobatic performance on stage and through the park.
Attending this year’s event were Mr Greg Wright, Administrator of Bayside Council; the Honourable Matt Thistlethwaite MP, Federal Member for Kingsford Smith; Mr Ron Hoenig MP, State Member for Heffron; Mr Michael Daley MP, State Member for Maroubra; Mr Niu Wenqi, Education Counsellor of the Chinese Consulate General in Sydney; and Associate Professor Junfang Xi, Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute at UNSW.
In his speech, Member for Kingsford Smith, Matt Thistlethwaite greeted residents and visitors with Chinese New Year greetings and highlighted the importance of multiculturalism in the community. Also giving his warm wishes, Niu Wenqi, Education Counsellor of the Chinese Consulate General in Sydney, said it was his first time spending Chinese New Year in the southern hemisphere with summer weather. He expressed his particular enjoyment of Sydney’s vibrant celebrations and welcoming atmosphere.
Many people visited the Confucius Institute stalls on the day, getting to try on traditional costumes, learn about the Guqin instrument, get their Chinese name and write lucky wishes in calligraphy. Teachers from the Confucius Institute also ran fun activities for kids, including lantern making and paper cutting. Additionally, the Confucius Institute at UNSW gave out over 1000 lucky red envelopes filled with chocolate gold coins to children throughout the day.
Now in its third year, this annual Chinese New Year celebration has established itself as a popular fixture in the local calendar. Approximately 3000 residents came along on the Saturday to partake in festivities and usher in the Year of the Rooster. Many residents said it was a great local event which celebrated Chinese culture and brought the community together.
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