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Celebrating Lunar New Year at Vanderbilt

Posted by on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 in Culture, Dance, Dining, Diversity, Extracurriculars, Food, Student Organizations.

Lunar New Year is a traditional celebration shared by Asian cultures. Specifically, the 2019 Chinese New Year Day, which is also known as Spring Festival, is on February 5. The LNYF showcase I discussed in my last post concluded the Lunar New Year events at Vanderbilt. Here are some of the other events celebrating the Lunar New Year besides the showcase!

Towers Tuesday’s Celebration

Towers Tuesday is a weekly event held at Towers residence hall. On a Tuesday evening in mid-January, Towers residents enjoyed Chinese paper cutting in the lounge. As 2019 is the year of the pig, some wrote Chinese characters—such as “新春快乐,” which means “Happy Spring Festival”—and drew pigs in traditional ink brush. The event was a study break for students to try Asian snacks: salty crackers, chocolate-coated biscuit sticks, ラムネ (Japanese marble soda), and more!

VUCSSA Lunar New Year Celebration

VUCSSA (Vanderbilt University Chinese Students and Scholars Association) held a gala in February 2nd with dinner and performances by children and adults from Nashville’s Asian communities. The event also featured multiple singing acts, a violin and guitar duet, trivia, a music chair game, and 相声 (a traditional Chinese comedic duo dialogue).

A Traditional Chinese Dance with Veiled Fans

My friend and the other performer danced with veiled fans to melodies from a dance drama about Confucius. The gala also highlighted a video of VUCSSA members introducing their hometown festive customs and wishing the audience a happy new year.

Dinner at E. Bronson Ingram College Dining Hall

The dining hall in E. Bronson Ingram College, our newest residential college, served a special Lunar New Year menu on February 5. Many students came and enjoyed the Asian-inspired dinner: dumplings, spring rolls, rice paper rolls, pho, and more.

These were just a few of the many Lunar New Year celebrations at Vanderbilt and in Nashville that fit different people’s schedules and interests, such as study breaks with snacks, a showcase, a meal, or a game. I encourage you to participate in the festive events and reflect on what you gain from the cultural immersion. 祝大家新的一年里幸福安康!(“I wish you joy and health in the new year!” in Chinese)

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