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UCLA entertains crowd of students with Lunar New Year celebration

Baruch College’s United Chinese Language Association hosted its annual “Lunar New Year Festival” on March 6, as a celebration of the Lunar New Year.

The event consisted of numerous performances, some tied to the theme of the Lunar New Year, while others were more for entertainment. Additionally, a series of games were played, where members of the audience were called up to participate.

Alexandra Chan, co-vice president of UCLA, explained: “UCLA hosts a Lunar New Year Festival every year because is such a significant event for the Chinese community in Baruch. In China, Lunar New Year is the most important holiday of the year, and traditionally begins on the first day of the first month of the lunisolar calendar and ends with Lantern Festival on the 15th day.

The holiday is celebrated by bring together families and honoring ancestors. We hope that through the food that we serve, the performances, and the decorations at our festival, we will be able to spread awareness and appreciation of the Chinese culture."

The festival started off with a dragon dance, in which two students danced around the stage holding up a figure of a dragon. This is a traditional part of Lunar New Year festivities, though the students modernized it with a more humorous approach. They made the audience laugh with their movements and delighted the crowd by throwing small gifts at it.

A duo of rappers known as TriKuza was up next, rapping a rhyme they created in honor of the event as well as two of their other songs. TriKuza employed the help of the audience for one of its songs, asking the crowd to sing along to the chorus.

The games played on stage included a water bottle flip, a game of rock paper scissors, in which losing players had to eat sushi with wasabi, a game where participants had to feed their partners a Cup Noodles and a game in which players must get an Oreo into their mouths from their foreheads. Also, UCLA prepared a few rounds of Family Feud relating to the Chinese New Year.

There was a dance routine performed by the Asian Fusion Dance at New York University group, which showed students some of the elements of traditional Chinese dance. The final performance was by Nix, the YouTuber known as uuuuuuuukewithme, in which she performed three songs on her ukulele.

The Multipurpose Room was decorated in red for the event, with traditional symbols and designs hung up on the walls.

The food served was chicken and rice with an egg roll, and for dessert a variety of puddings were offered.

Upon entering the event, students were handed a raffle ticket, a beverage of choice and a sponge cake. A raffle was drawn at the closing of the event, and as students left they were given red envelopes filled with Chinese candies. Red envelopes full of money are traditionally given during Lunar New Year to children by their parents and relatives.

“This event exceeded my expectations,” said sophomore David Gallir. “I had a great time and am now planning on getting involved with the UCLA in the future.”

The event was both enjoyable and informative for students, and taught people about the Lunar New Year, focusing on the ideas of honoring one’s ancestors, new beginnings and family.

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