Year of the Rabbit
Stephen Lam, President of the BIDAC welcomed everyone to Monterey Park’s Lunar New Year celebration held in the downtown business district on January 29 and 30. He introduced members of the BIDAC who worked on this event for the last six months. He introduced special guests that included Monterey Park Mayor Pro Tem David Lau, Councilmembers Anthony Wong and Mitch Ing, City Clerk Dave Barron, Congressmember Judy Chu, Assemblymember Mike Eng, Miss Monterey Park Liwen Tsai and Princess Jasmine Sunda, Garvey School Board President Bob Bruesch, Chamber Executive Daniel Kim and Chamber President Vince Chang.
Mayor Pro Tem David Lau welcomed all to the All American City of Monterey Park. This is our 13th annual Chinese New Year Lunar celebration. We do it in a grand manor. He thanked all for coming to this event. We have the highest percent of Chinese-Americans in the USA. This event will help people to appreciate and honor the traditions of China. We help people to learn about other cultures and get along. This is a community event. He thanked BIDAC, Stephen Lam, staff and sponsors. This event will help promote our downtown businesses. Have a Healthy, Safe and Prosperous New Year. The Year of the Rabbit.
Mitch Ing welcomed all to the festival to celebrate the Year of the Rabbit. He was born in the Year of the Rabbit. He wished everyone a Happy New Year.
Anthony Wong thanked everyone for coming to celebrate the Year of the Rabbit. It is celebrated around the world by most of the Asia people. This is a family event. He wished everyone a Happy New Year.
Congressmember Judy Chu wished everyone a Happy New Year. It is great to be here. Thirteen years ago we started the Lunar New Year celebration in the city. It has been getting stronger and bigger each year. It is a day to celebrate the Chinese culture. She presented proclamations to the members of BIDAC.
Assemblymember Mike Eng welcomed all to this event. He wished everyone Happy New Year. Monterey Park is a coalition and we need to work together. He presented proclamations to members of BIDAC.
A member of State Senator Ed Hernandez’ staff presented a proclamation to the members of BIDAC. This event brings the country together. He wished everyone a Happy New Year.
Vince Chang introduced Miss Monterey Park and her court. He wished everyone a Happy New Year.
Miss Monterey Park Liwen Tsai said she was raised in Monterey Park. She remembers always celebrating at the Chinese New Year festival. She is excited to be here to enjoy this memorial experience.
The event began with 320,000 firecrackers making noise to chase away the evil spirits.
Dragon dancers and Lion dancers filled the area in front of the stage. They symbolize good luck and fortune. They paraded up and down the event visiting all the businesses and 150 booths on Garvey Avenue.
The Lion dancers accepted lucky red envelopes filled with money. The red envelopes are given to family members as gifts in celebration of the New Year.
Mitch Ing, David Lau, Judy Chu, Anthony Wong, Bob Lockovich from US Post Office, Stephen Lam and Dora Leung presented the Year of the Rabbit stamp featuring kumquats, a symbol of good luck.
Miss Monterey Park Liwen Tsai and Princess Jasmine Sunda joined BIDAC member Richard Kwok at the festival.
Chinese folk dancers from the American Cultural Center of Chinese Minority perform to the delight of the audience.
Live entertainment included Spanish folk dances, Hawaiian dancers, cooking demonstrations, 1950 Doo-Wop music, arts and craft demonstrations, karaoke contests and jazz music.
Mr. Fun was very busy making balloon animals for the children.
Rabbits posed for pictures with their friends during the festival.
The food booths featured international dishes. The other booths offered jewelry, plants, books, DVDs, CDs, clothes, gifts, dolls, toys and knickknacks for sale as well as information booths from local businesses and service clubs.
The event also featured carnival rides and game booths.
Happy New Year!