Chinese prepare for arrival of dragon

By Amelia Wade

Steve Zhang, dressed as a god of fortune, hands out envelopes of lucky gold chocolate coins in Auckland yesterday.
Photo / Brett Phibbs
Steve Zhang, dressed as a god of fortune, hands out envelopes of lucky gold chocolate coins in Auckland yesterday. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Lanterns are being hung, mandarin trees sourced and firecrackers put in place in the lead-up to the Chinese New Year festivities beginning this weekend.

Auckland's Sky Tower will again be lit in the traditional colours of red and gold for the two-week celebrations from this Sunday until February 6 to usher in the Year of the Dragon.

Held on the 15th day of the first month of the lunar calendar, Chinese New Year is one of the biggest celebrations in the East.

Almost 10,000 Chinese people live in Auckland, according to the most recent Census figures.

Lanterns will be suspended across Federal St in the city, and fabric decorations and the traditional mandarin trees will be placed around the Sky Tower.

Festivities and free entertainment will begin on Sunday, on the eve of the Chinese New Year, with firecrackers being lit at the base of the Sky Tower at 7pm.

More firecrackers will be set off on Monday night, Chinese New Year's Day, followed by a traditional Lion Dance ceremony and an acrobat show.

The Auckland Chinese Community Centre has been gearing up for its Chinese New Year Festival and Market Day this Saturday after holding the festivities for the past 20 years.

The festival, featuring more than 200 food stalls and a number of traditional performances, has grown in popularity and is now attended by more than 20,000 people.

NEW YEAR NO-NOs

Try to avoid:
- Housework, in case you wash or sweep away good luck.
- Anything sharp in case you cut threads of good fortune.
- Words related to sickness and death.
- Breaking anything - this may indicate bad luck ahead.

- NZ Herald

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