Welcoming in the New Year
1. New Year Markets
In the course of the New Year's celebrations, pop-up markets appear and sell New Year goods, such as clothing, small arts, food and decorations. So come down the Asian Market on Sunday 14th February and peruse, buy, snack, participate and enjoy what's on offer at all the stalls – TSB Bank Arena, 11am - 5pm.
2. Clean House/Feel Good
On Sunday 7th, New Year's eve, it’s a tradition to pick up a broom and sweep away bad luck from the previous year to make room for the good. This is as an opportunity to spring-clean – time to dispose of unnecessary clutter. A clean home means sweeping away any misfortunes, regrets or mistakes, to make room for a fresh, ordered start to the New Year. Wear new clothes; out with the old, in with the new - another symbol of a fresh start.
3. Settle Debts (and Drama)
Chinese New Year is a good time to put behind money and relationship troubles. Pay off the credit card bill and use any leftover funds to treat yum char for someone you haven’t seen for a while.
4. Eat – lots
Most of the new year is meant to spend inside the family home, eating, relaxing, and spending time together. But you could book a table for a traditional Chinese banquet – our Participating Restaurants offer some delicious foods specially created for this occasion, and for an amazing experience, check out when a traditional lion dance could appear at your yum cha table! Go home to feast with the family, but if you can’t, make a date to share a meal with your friends. Just remember to call your parents and grandparents to wish them health, wealth, and happiness. That way, you can get some of that moolah, which brings us to tradition #5.
5. Get That Hoong Bouw (red envelopes filled with cash)
The Hoong Bouw is probably THE best tradition growing up. Typically given to the children and the unmarried, these little red envelopes usually contain coins or notes – and all gratefully accepted!
6. Go Red and Gold
The month of February is all about decking the halls with red and gold. Visit some local Chinese grocery stores that sell paper cut outs, Chinese scrolls, and gorgeous lucky knots and ornaments.
The lion dance – one of the most famous Chinese cultural traditions – is totally necessary during any festival but you can hear them all year round; opening new restaurants or commencing an activity. These lions traditionally bring good luck and prosperity and drive away evil, so come and enjoy them at our Festival.
8. Come and Celebrate!
Come join us at the Wellington’s Chinese New Year Festival celebrations – Saturday 13th at TSB Bank Arena showcases the East Meets West Celebration Show bringing the best of Wellington local groups performing alongside top performing artists from Xiamen in a fusion of eastern and western performing arts. Check out the full programme listed on the Events Pages.
Buy, give or do four of anything. the word has the misfortune of sounding like the word for death - very bad!
Use sharp objects in the lead up to New Year; anything involving blades or needles mean a hard year ahead, so avoid cooking - have dinner at one of our Participating Restaurants!
Monochrome fashion; white and black are associated with death and mourning.
Hair shouldn't be washed on the first day of the year; in the Chinese language, hair has the same pronunciation as 'fa' which means 'to become healthy' so in effect, you'd be 'washing away one's fortune' at the beginning of the New Year.
Swear or use negative language or talk about death, ghosts and the past year's misfortunes. Now is the time to be positive and look to the prospects of the approaching new year.