The Great Wall Chinese Academy and Highlands Ranch Cultural Affairs Association presented the Chinese New Year Celebration on Saturday, February 9 at the Southridge Recreation Center. The culture fair featured Chinese refreshments and treats, as well as a marketplace, origami workshop and calligraphy demonstration. The highlight of the event was the on-stage performances which included a lion and dragon dance by the National Martial Arts Academy and several folk dances by students of the Great Wall Chinese Academy. Other organizations invited to perform include Junior Denver Taiko and Han Lee’s Taekwondo AcTaikoademy.

 

Great Wall Chinese Academy teaches the Mandarin language and culture to students from preschool to high school and even to adults. Students wrote essays about the new year and below are some of the excerpts. For more information, visit www.greatwallchineseacademy.org.

Gong xi fa cai! Xin nian kuai le!
By: Michelle Hou, Student, Great Wall Chinese Academy

Gong xi fa cai! Xin nian kuai le! Red envelopes, calligraphy, paper cutouts, firecrackers, dancing, music—Chinese New Year is here! And to celebrate this major Chinese holiday, the Great Wall Chinese Academy put on its annual performance at the Southridge Recreation Center to celebrate it with everyone else.

Chinese New Year is really a very special holiday. The Great Wall Chinese Academy performance is always a hit and we always receive great comments on it. It is special for me because it is always nice to see the young hand of a toddler reaching out to point at a paper cutout plastered to the wall, or the warm clapping and cheering of the audience as the Chinese-Yoyoists perform their tricks. Feelings of happiness and pride always rise up inside me while I help clean up the performance at the end of the day. At this moment, I always think about how great this is going to be next year.

Chinese New Year 2013
By: Eric Zhao, Student, Great Wall Chinese Academy

As most people know, Chinese New Year is a delightful time of year. At the Chinese New Year event, there is reason to celebrate. You can definitely see how popular and widespread this event is after attending. The amount of people that show up is outstanding. I would have never thought that such a modest festival could attract so many people. The number of newcomers increases incessantly while the people that like this event keep returning. Why is this? Well, the answer is simple. It’s the environment. Although I help out a lot, I can easily see how upbeat everybody is. There’s no reason not to be delighted, because the area is bursting with excitement. This event contains entertainment, food, and cultural items for sale; what more can you ask for? It’s more than enough to make a person happy and I haven’t seen anyone leave with a sour attitude. I appreciate the Chinese New Year event very much. The way it brings people together is amazing and I hope that I will be able to be there for many years to come.

Chinese New Year 2013
By: Amy Zhong, Student, Great Wall Chinese Academy
As I peek my head around the curtain from behind, I see a dark room packed with people whispering to one another and waiting eagerly. Seeing that the performance is about to start, I hurry backstage when the curtains are drawn back, the lights turn on, and colorful lions start to dance to the beat of loud drums. The Chinese New Year event of 2013 has begun! The community joins the Great Wall Chinese Academy as we put on a breathtaking performance of elegant Chinese folk dances, stunning martial arts and kung fu, the incredible styles and tricks of the Chinese yoyo, and traditional Chinese music and singing to celebrate Chinese New Year. Not only does the community get to kick off the New Chinese Year, they are also given the amazing opportunity by the Great Wall Chinese Academy to experience the unique culture and traditions of China, such as tasting traditional Chinese food and looking at different Chinese artifacts as well as watching the performances. Being a participant for the Chinese New Year event every year is a wonderful opportunity for me.