|Malaysians perform lion dance to celebrate the traditional Chinese Lantern Festival in Malacca, Malaysia, on Feb. 24, 2013. (Xinhua/Chong Voon Chung)|
The Spring Festival marking the year of the snake is finally coming to a close. On Sunday night, people all over joined in the final celebration, the Lantern Festival. Let’s travel around the country, then stop by Singapore to give Chinese New Year one last farewell.
In southeastern Fujian Province, the lantern fair has been a traditional event in the Mawei district of Fuzhou for the past decade. 26 sets of light installations and more than 10-thousand smaller lanterns illuminated the streets, turning it into a sea of colorful lights.
Visitor said, "The lanterns look good. My family and I are enjoying ourselves at this fair. That’s the whole point of the Lantern Festival."
The traditional celebration in Mianyang city of Sichuan Province is called "burning the dragon of fire". Dragon dancers perform in the middle of the streets, while people in the crowd light up sparklers and point them at the dragon.
The celebration begins every year on the ninth day of the lunar New Year, and ends with a grand dance on the lantern festival. The dragon of fire symbolizes health and fortune, and locals hope it will return each year.
Besides fireworks and lanterns, locals in the southern Guangdong Province also enjoy celebrations during the day thanks to their warm weather. Lettuce and pinwheels are also commonly exchanged gifts. The spinning pinwheel represents that everything will go smoothly in the New Year, while the Chinese pronunciation of lettuce means "to bring fortune".
And at last, away in Singapore, the local Chinese community celebrated the holiday with lights and flowers. It also combined its holiday festivities with the local Malaysians, Filipinos and Indonesians.
In the meantime, a huge dinner party was held in the Chinese embassy, with extra surprises from pastry chefs. Stretched noodles, sweet dumplings and dim sum brought a delicious ending to this year’s spring festival celebration.
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