In celebration of the Lunar New Year, Chinese and other Asian communities around the world and across the U.S. will wish their families and friends a happy and prosperous Year of the Monkey. In New York, there will be many ways to observe the holiday. While Chinese and other Asian restaurants in the boroughs of Manhattan and Queens will be serving traditional fare, there will be a number of special events conducted during the holiday period, which begins Monday.
That day at 11 a.m. EST, the Better Chinatown USA organization will host a cultural festival in Manhattan’s Sara D. Roosevelt Park. It will feature food vendors and performances by dragon dancers, magicians and musicians, among others. The firecracker ceremony, a traditional event meant to ward off evil spirits while welcoming in the new year, will start at noon. The festival will finish at 3 p.m.
Flushing, a neighborhood in Queens, also has a sizable Asian population. A parade will be held there Saturday beginning at 11 a.m. Parade participants will proceed from Union Street and 37th Avenue to Main Street.
The Lunar New Year Parade, attracting thousands of revelers, will be held Feb. 14, in Manhattan’s Chinatown district. Beginning at 1 p.m., the parade will get going at Canal and Mott streets, run down East Broadway toward the Manhattan Bridge and end near Grand Street and Sara D. Roosevelt Park.
Chinese New Year wouldn’t be complete without a big traditional meal. Restaurants are offering holiday specials throughout all five boroughs of New York. There will be the classic cheap eats at dumpling and Peking duck cafes, as well as gourmet creations at dim sum dining halls. Serious Eats has compiled a list of the most highly praised Chinese and pan-Asian restaurants in the city.
Meanwhile, there’s always the classic Joe’s Shanghai, which has branches in Manhattan and Queens. Joe’s is famous for its soup dumplings and other Shanghainese staple dishes that are served family style.