Chinese New Year
New Year is coming,
And each household is bustling.
Red couplet pasting and firecracker spluttering,
Every family hurries to make dumplings.
Brothers and sisters,
Put on new hat and clothes happily.
(Sourced from internet)
Spring Festival is one of the busiest times of the year at the Linden Centre. We decorate the yard with our Centre family; we hang lanterns here and put incense out there. From the thirtieth to the third day of the lunar new year, we’ll celebrate the New Year with the Bai people, we’ll visit local villagers, and take you to experience an authentic Yunnan New Year.
1:30—3:00 Paper-Cutting, Writing Spring Festival Couplets
3:15—4:00 New Year’s Offering Ceremony
Option 1: Home Cooked Feast at a Local Bai Home!
Option 2: Bai Meal Prepared by You!
7:30—8:00 Fireworks Show
8:00—10:00 Spring Festival Gala/Film Workshop Film Screening
Paper-cutting is a traditional folk art that is used to decorate the home and express good wishes during festivals. Historically, paper-cuts were often created by working-class people. The Bai people’s simple aesthetic and desire to make a better life are embodied in various kinds of paper-cut patterns. This craft was added to the list of “safeguarded intangible cultural heritage of Yunnan” in 2013.
On Lunar New Year’s Eve, we will learn how to make new year’s messages from Ms. Zhang, our local staff member who is very skilled at paper-cutting.
Note: Paper-cutting takes patience. At the beginning, we suggest choosing a simple pattern to start with. For children, make sure to pay attention to safe scissor usage.
Writing Spring Festival Couplets
Spring Festival couplets have been popular in China since the Song Dynasty. On New Year’s Day, every household puts up New Year’s couplets on their doorway. A good couplet requires not only calligraphy skills, but a set of poetic and meaningful words.
Join us in our library to write couplets with Linden Centre’s own calligraphy enthusiast “Big Bear” and other local calligraphers. You can choose from the couplets we have selected, or you can write your own custom New Year’s greetings. We encourage you to present your written couplets to your family members and local villagers to spread the holiday joy.
Traditional New Year’s Offering Ceremony
In Dali, Bai people have a local religion called 本主教 (Ben Zhu Jiao) which translates literally to “local religion.” This local faith combines elements and gods from Buddhism and Taoism in addition to local folk heroes. For the New Year, locals prepare offerings and burn incense to honor these local gods. Every lunar new year’s eve, the Bai people hold a special ceremony in honor of the principal god of the village. As a part of Xizhou, the Linden Centre also participates in this tradition; Jeanee and Brian Linden as well as our local staff Sumei and Zhangqi prepare pine branches from Cangshan, a table full of offerings, and incense for our town’s god. Join us as we perform the New Year’s ceremony.
Dinner Option Number 1: Home-Cooked Feast at a Local Bai Home!
Join us for a new year’s eve dinner at a local Bai home in our neighboring Sha village. Bai cuisine in general, and especially for this year, is heavily centered around pork as the main ingredient. At a typical new year’s meal you will find many iterations of this staple — from ears to skin to feet. Don’t worry, for the less adventurous eaters, there will be plenty of other delicious Bai dishes to try including hot and sour fish, plenty of veggies, and more.
Meal Time: “Chu Xi” (Feb 4th) 4:30-6:30 pm
Price: Adults 198RMB/Person, Children (ages 5-12) 120RMB/Person, Children (under 5) Free
Note: Please inform Linden Centre front desk staff if you would like to attend this event at least one day in advance, in addition please let staff know if you have any food allergies or dietary restrictions.
Dinner Option Number 2: Bai Meal Prepared by You!
Try your hand at cooking up some classic Bai dishes. For new year’s eve we’ve prepared a special cooking school course: we’ll introduce you to the essentials of Bai food culture, teach you how to cook two dishes, invite you to make dumplings, share some of chef-prepared dishes, and sit down for a meal made by you.
Meal Time: “Chu Xi” (Feb 4th) 4:30-6:30pm
Price: Adults 128 RMB/Person, Children (ages 5-12) 64RMB/Person, Children (under 5) Free
Note: Note: Please inform Linden Centre front desk staff if you would like to attend this event at least one day in advance, in addition please let staff know if you have any food allergies or dietary restrictions.
A New Year’s Eve to Remember: Fireworks Show
In Chinese, the word for firework is “烟花” (yan hua) which translates literally as “smoke flower.” So join us on the Linden Centre terrace for our very own smoke flower show! But it’s not just us, all of the neighboring villages will be setting off fireworks as well; there’s nothing quite like the celebratory new years environment in rural China.
We will also be offering two special screenings on this evening: at the Linden Centre TV Room we will be playing the Spring Festival Gala, watched and beloved nationally; at the Linden Commons Bar/Cafe we will be screening a selection of Film Workshop student-produced films about Dali and the Bai people. Snacks and tea will be provided at both locations.
Our New Year’s Package is available to guests at both of our Xizhou sites (The Linden Centre & Linden Commons)
For more details call us at: +86 (0) 872-2453000, or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Happy Lunar New Year from the Linden Centre!