Thousands turned out to welcome the Lunar Year of the Dog with a colorful parade through Chinatown in Washington, D.C., on Sunday, Feb. 18, featuring Chinese lion and dragon dances, musical performances, youth groups, marching bands and beauty queens. Participating in the festivities were Mayor Muriel Bowser and Council member Jack Evans, who has represented the Chinatown neighborhood for more than 20 years.
Leading the parade were Stanley Kao of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office; Wally Lee, chairman of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, the parade’s sponsor; and various city officials.
A few blocks away, on Saturday, Feb. 10, the Smithsonian American Art Museum held their 5th annual Chinese New Year Family Day, where attendees took in a lion dance, acrobatics and performances of Chinese folk music and opera by a troupe from China’s Sichuan province. Parents and their children were able to paint umbrellas by hand and try traditional Chinese paper-cutting and picture-making. SAAM partnered with the municipal government of Chengdu, Sichuan’s capital city.
The beginning date of the Lunar New Year is different each year. The Year of the Dog began on Friday, Feb. 16. The eleventh animal in the Chinese zodiac, the Dog is the symbol of loyalty and honesty. You are a “Dog” if you were born after the second month in one of the following years: 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994 or 2006. Some famous “Dogs” include Winston Churchill, Mother Teresa, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Bill Clinton and Donald Trump.
View Jeff Malet’s photos from the Chinese New Year Parade and SAAM’s Chinese New Year Family Day by clicking on the photo icons below.