By David Brand
Lunar New Year celebrations kicked off throughout Queens — and in Asian communities around the world — on Tuesday, ushering in a month of dynamic boroughwide events and festivities honoring the Year of the Pig.
Councilmember Peter Koo, who is Hong Kong American, said the Lunar New Year enables families and communities to unite around the world.
“The Lunar New Year is such an important holiday throughout our community. It is a time for families to come together, often from across the world, to celebrate and spend time with one another,” Koo said. “We embrace our family, our health and good fortune, and we prepare to take on the coming year with positive energy and optimism.”
“I am proud to serve the 20th Council District in the City Council, and I look forward to continuing the fight for our fair share and holding our government accountable in the New Year,” Koo continued. “I would like to take this opportunity to thank all New Yorkers for embracing this important holiday in our community, and I wish everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous Year of the Pig.”
Flushing’s famous Lunar New Year Parade will wind through the streets on Saturday, starting at 11 a.m. at Union Street and 37th Avenue. Individuals marching in the parade should meet a Historic St. George’s Church before 10:30 a.m.
The celebration continues throughout February, with several events, including the Red Envelope Art Show, taking place each weekend at Flushing Town Hall.
On Feb. 27, Borough Hall hosts its annual Lunar New Year Celebration and Photo Contest from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
“Lunar New Year is a time to honor important traditions and to celebrate with family and friends as we envision what the future holds for us,” said Borough President Melinda Katz. “It is my pleasure to host our annual Lunar New Year celebration, which will include the announcement of the winners of this year’s Lunar New Year photo contest. A picture is worth a thousand words, and everyone is encouraged to participate in the photo contest and join us at our celebration on February 27. May everyone celebrating Lunar New Year have a happy and safe time.”
Katz invites Queens residents to submit photos based on the theme “New Year and Me" via queensbp.org/2019lny by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 14. Katz will announce the winners at the beginning of the event on Feb. 27. Attendees should RSVP by visiting www.queensbp.org/rsvp or calling (718) 286-2661.
The celebration and photo contest are co-sponsored by Asian Americans for Equality, Bank of China, the Chinese-American Planning Council, East West Bank, the Flushing Chinese Business Association, the Forest Hills Asian Association, Korean Community Services of Metropolitan New York, Resorts World Casino New York City, SinoVision and The Korean Channel.
“Lunar New Year in Queens is a joyous celebration of our diverse and dynamic community,” said Thomas Yu and Jennifer Sun, co-executive directors of Asian Americans for Equality.
“We are excited to co-sponsor the Queens Borough President’s Lunar New Year Photo Contest once again this year,” said Sam Sang Ki Han, CEO of The Korean Channel. “May the Year of the Pig bring great success to our amazing borough of Queens.”