It might be the Year of the Ox, but that didn't stop an impressive dragon from crashing the Chinese New Year celebrations at Te Takere in Levin at the weekend.
Levin celebrated the Year of the Ox with a fantastic range of activities, craft, performances and food last Saturday at Te Takeretanga o Kura-hau-pō.
Wellington Chinese Sports and Cultural Centre performed both the Dragon and the Lion dance, which are believed to bring good luck.
Some of the younger members of the audience were delighted with the chance to participate in the dance.
Members of the Horowhenua Chinese Association cooked a delicious selection of pork buns, dumplings and Chinese tea and treated the taste buds of friends and families all morning.
Chinese New Year is the most important holiday on the Chinese calendar and one of the most ancient events celebrated around the world.
It is spring in China and a time when families have meals together and enjoy time with friends.
Along with food, and performances, the centrepiece of the celebration was the traditional dragon dance.
Another highlight of the event was the performance from Zoe Li playing the ehru (a two-stringed Chinese violin) and Jeff Lin on dizi (flute).
Xiaotong Yang then held a workshop on the history of the erhu. It was a rare chance to hear traditional Chinese musical instruments and enjoy some incredibly beautiful music.
The children's library was full of screams of delight as families enjoyed face painting, a Chinese dragon craft and games.
Business support manager Celle Gore, who was involved organising the event, noted that it was fitting that 2021 was the Year of the Ox, known as the most hardworking animal on the Chinese horoscope.
"It's good to celebrate the hard work and resilience we have, especially in these uncertain times," she said.
'We really enjoy working with our local Chinese Association on this special event. It is a chance for them to share their rich culture and celebrate with our wider community. Things like this are so important."