Break out the party hats and noisemakers (that you probably just got done packing up) because it’s time to count down to the New Year…again! Saturday, January 28th officially kicks off the Chinese New Year. What started many years ago as a cultural celebration of the new lunar calendar and animal has quickly turned into a global phenomenon, with countries around the world taking part in the celebration. In honor of the upcoming festivities, let’s take a moment to learn about the Chinese New Year.
Fun Facts About the Chinese New Year
- This year is the year of the rooster. The Chinese calendar follows a 12 year lunar cycle, making those born in 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993 and 2005 fellow roosters.
- The start date always varies sometime between January 21st and February 20th and is determined by the Chinese lunar calendar.
- Over 1 billion red envelopes are sold and traded among friends, family and even coworkers during the New Year. Typically, people exchange money and coins.
- After Hong Kong, London has the biggest parties honoring the New Year. In 2015, more than 500 thousand people flooded the streets of London to celebrate.
- The most fireworks in the world are sold during the Chinese New Year. No other place in the world has ever had as many fireworks go off in the same hour as China does when the New Year strikes (sorry America, but the 4th of July has around 1/10th the amount of fireworks). It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, since China is responsible for 90% of the firework manufacturing in the world.
- “Xinnian Kuaile” means “Happy New Year” and is pronounced”sshin-nyen kwhy-luh.”
2017 Chinese Zodiac Predictions
The Year of the Rooster is said to be a powerful one full of prosperity and growth. This year, make every impression count, especially in business and love. Instead of focusing on risky investments, stick to tried and true methods of success this year.
Traits of the Rooster
Roosters are known for their fiery personality and attention to detail. They are also:
- Loyal. Roosters praise loyalty over almost any other character trait and are fiercely committed to friends and family. If you make a promise with a rooster, you can be sure that they’ll keep it.
- Straight forward. Roosters abide by the “tell it like it is” approach to life, which may not always work well with sensitive individuals. Roosters need a partner who is thick-skinned and not easily offended. But despite an often tough exterior, roosters have big caring hearts and would do anything for a friend in need.
- Hard working. Roosters are highly motivated and hard-working; traits that enable most of them to have successful careers. It’s said that the best jobs for roosters are a banker, dentist, insurance agent, secretary, and bookkeeper.
- Family oriented. It goes hand in hand with their loyalty that roosters are very close to their family and at time overprotective. People born during these years often have large, close knit families and enjoy children and parenthood.
- In good health. Roosters are known for their active lifestyle and high energy, which keeps them in generally good health. But when they do get sick, they feel it come on quickly.
- Appearance driven. “You never get a second chance to make a first impression” may have first been said by a rooster. They take appearances very seriously and would never be caught out without looking their best. But despite their love of fashion, they rarely look down on others or think of themselves as as better than their peers.
Chinese New Year Flowers
Along with the grand celebrations and parties comes plenty of tradition and meaning. Flowers hold special significance in Chinese culture and play an important role in day-to-day life and special occasions. During the Chinese New Year, the most revered flowers are:
- Orchids. Known for their beauty and delicate nature, orchids have often been symbolic of fertility and innocence.
- Peach blossoms. A sacred plant in China, these flowers are incredibly popular during the Chinese New Year and represent personal growth and prosperity. They are often exchanged between young men and women looking for love.
- Plum blossoms. These vibrant pink flowers symbolize perseverance and reliability – traits the Chinese believe are necessary for a successful New Year.
- Peonies. Known as the ‘flower of riches and honor,’ red peonies are often associated with feminine beauty, affection and charm.
- Water Fairy Flowers. These flowers can grow in nothing more than shallow bowls of water, making them a popular symbol of prosperity and strength.