By Antonia Mufarech
Alexander Wong, Seven Star Lion Dance Group dancer: I think lion dancing means family. You know, for Chinese people it’s a very warming thing, you know. For like New Year’s, it brings people together.
ALTHOUGH THE COMMUNITY MOURNS THE LOSS OF THOSE IN CALIFORNIA, THE YEAR OF THE RABBIT IS COMMEMORATED. PARADE PARTICIPANTS – SUCH AS WONG AND HIS FATHER – FOCUS ON CELEBRATING FAMILY.
Tommy Wong, Seven Star Lion Dance Group leader: I’m really happy everybody come to Chinatown. And my family. I am very happy for Chinese New Year.
FAMILIES FROM DIFFERENT CULTURES ALSO ATTEND THE PARADE IN CHINATOWN.
Rosario Morales, Chinese New Year Parade spectator: Ellos nacieron aquí, mis hijos. Conocen mis raíces y es bonito conocer las raíces de otros y traer cada vez más conocimiento de las raíces de cada país a este. [They were born here, my children. They know my roots, and it’s nice to learn about the roots of others and bring more and more knowledge of the roots of each country to this one.]
ROSARIO ISN’T THE ONLY MEMBER OF THE BELLO-MORALES FAMILY WHO ENJOYS THIS FESTIVITY.
Denise Bello, Chinese New Year Parade spectator: Every time when I go out with my family, every day is my favorite day.
Crowd: Happy New Year! Happy New Year!
CHINESE CULTURE ISN’T THE ONLY ONE BEING CELEBRATED.
Maneshwar Singh, Chinese New Year Parade spectator: I think family is an important part of culture. I think with family you learn together and you grow together, and I honestly feel like family is a big part of this culture as well. So being here is just very inviting, very wholesome. And I think just a good family experience to come and partake.
REGARDLESS OF THE CULTURE AND COUNTRY, FAMILY AND RESILIENCE ARE A COMMON THEME IN THIS CELEBRATION.
Alexander Wong: I think my favorite part is the people. You know, we are going through some tough times right now, and with lion dancing, with Chinese New Year, everybody is happy to see that we are all healthy and we’re still living life and we’re coming out here.
IN CHINATOWN – ANTONIA MUFARECH.
Tommy Wong: Happy Chinese New Year!
MEDILL NEWS SERVICE.
Antonia Mufarech is a Magazine graduate student at Medill. You can follow her on Twitter @antomufarech.