The Year of the Rat begins Jan. 25 and Cloverdale’s Precious Blood Church is hosting a Lunar New Year festival to mark the occasion.
“We wanted to share a little Chinese culture with the Cloverdale community,” said event organizer Mable Ho.
“Fr. Paul Chu, our pastor, is Chinese and he wanted to share the joy and happiness of Chinese New Year with everyone.”
Ho said Chu’s idea behind starting a festival in Cloverdale was inspired by his desire to bring together people from all different cultures within the community.
“The festival will highlight Chinese culture and act as a friendly event to strengthen ties between the Chinese community and the rest of the community.”
Ho said the church is inviting people to stop by Jan. 25 from 1:30-6 p.m. She said the carnival will start off with a traditional lion dance right at 1:30 p.m. She added the lion they will use for the dance is new and has never been used in a dance before.
Stage performances will follow at 2 p.m. and continue throughout the day.
“We will have food, white carrot cake, Hong Kong-style tea, and other typical Chinese dishes.”
The celebration will also feature performances by the Cloverdale Catholic School choir. There will be calligraphy stations, lantern riddles, karaoke, and interactive games. Traditional souvenirs and decorations will also be for sale.
“We will also have four lucky-draw contests throughout the day.” Ho said festival-goers will be able to purchase lucky-draw tickets for a chance to win several high-value prizes.
The rat is the first sign in the Chinese zodiac. Ho said in Chinese culture, the rat symbolizes wealth, success, fertility, and abundance.
For more info, visit pbparish.ca. Admission is free.
Precious Blood Church is located at 17475 59th Ave., Surrey.