February sees in the Chinese New Year, which for 2019 will be the Year of the Pig. It promises to be a spectacular few weeks of celebrations in Auckland, most notably with the Lantern Festival in the Domain that runs 14-17 February (aucklandnz.com).
The pig, an earthly symbol, represents the twelfth of the zodiac animals, and legend has it that the Jade Emperor ordered the creatures depending on the order they turned up for his banquet. The pig was the last to show, hence his position at number 12. The pig is, however, seen as fortunate, and even a symbol of wealth. Perhaps a visit to the casino is in order then come this Chinese New Year!
Out west, there are heaps Chinese New Year events to choose from. On 2 and 9 February, and 1 March, at Ranui Library there will be dance and musical performances, recitals of traditional stories and crafts activities for the kids, all free (see eventfinda.co.nz for details).
We’re really excited to see if guest numbers at the Olympic Park’s Whau Chinese New Year Festival (eventfinda.co.nz) top the 3,500 who turned up last year. The free-to-enter celebration takes place 10 February, from 12pm-8pm, with food stalls, Chinese performances and heaps of artwork displays.
If you’re looking to celebrate the occasion with an authentic sit-down meal, we highly recommend Grand China and Pei Wei, both in Henderson, and don’t forget all of the wonderful ethnic stalls that spring up at The Boundary Night Markets every Thursday night!