February 5, 2018

Chinese New Year to celebrate Year of the Dog

Chinese dance A traditional Chinese dance is performed during the 2015 Chinese New Year event celebrating the Year of the Sheep at Purdue University. (Purdue University file photo) Download image

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University will celebrate the Chinese New Year on Feb. 15 in the Purdue Memorial Union’s South Ballroom with refreshments, performances and activities such as calligraphy and lantern-making.

Wei Hong, professor of Chinese and Asian studies, says this year’s Chinese New Year will celebrate the Year of the Dog, which symbolizes a hardworking, honest and loyal generation.

“People born in this year might be symbolized by the traits of a dog,” said Hong, who is also associate dean in the College of Liberal Arts and director of the Confucius Institute at Purdue. “Dog is active and he’s hardworking. He wants to make sure everybody is well-attended, and dog is also modest. He doesn’t want to brag but he wants work done, and he’s social, as well.

Celebrating Chinese New Year in the Greater Lafayette community presents an opportunity of experiencing new cultures and traditions, Hong said.

“The Lunar New Year is the most celebrated festival in China and has also been celebrated in the United States and the rest of the world,” Hong said. “Through holidays and festivals, we are learning from each other with appreciation.”

Purdue’s Chinese New Year celebration, which is free and open to the public, will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“While the students from China and from other countries are learning about American culture, we are proud to present this festivity to all who are interested in learning more about China and its traditions.” Wei Hong said.

Undergraduate student Erik Stewart, who is helping plan the event, lived in Shanghai, China, for two years during his childhood before coming to Purdue, where he is minoring in Chinese language.

“Everyone has their own circle or bubble of friends, and they don’t interact too much with people of other cultures,” he said. “It’s important for more American students to learn about Chinese culture, considering there’s such a large Chinese population here.” 

Writer: Joseph Paul, 765-494-9541, paul102@purdue.edu 

Sources: Wei Hong, 765-494-3859, hongwei@purdue.edu

Erik Stewart, stewa138@purdue.edu

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