Celebrating the Chinese Lantern Festival
The Lantern Festival marks the end of the Chinese New Year Festivities with the first full moon of the year. On this brightly lit night, thousands of lanterns line the streets, hung from homes and storefronts, setting the stage for the processions and colorful performances to end the festivities.
Children carry their lanterns around the village and families come together to eat sweet rice balls for good fortune and family unity.
They range from the small lanterns carried by hand made of paper by school children to gigantic floats shaped in the Chinese Zodiac animal for that year made by teams of craftsmen.
There are many legends as to the origins of the Lantern Festival and many popular traditional practices have evolved through the years.
One particular celebration in the mountain area of PingXi right outside Taipei is particularly stunning. Known as the "Festival of the Sky Lanterns", hundreds of lanterns decorated with pictures and calligraphy with "lucky sayings" are lit and released into the sky in unison.
Click on the arrow and take a look at this delightful video, it's a short one-minute clip:
Your Own Sky Lantern Festival!
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Chinese Lantern Festival 2013
The Lantern Festival is the perfect finish to the Chinese New Year Festivities, it will be on February 24, 2013.
About Chinese LanternsChinese Lanterns are more than just decorations. Since 250 B.C. they have silently spoken of births, deaths, social status and approaching danger.
Banned during the Cultural Revolution, today they have resumed their place as honored guests at ceremonies and festivals.
Traditional Chinese Red LanternsThe placement and color of lanterns serve as a vital communication link in the communities. For example, since red suggest vitality and energy at its maximum state, a red lantern placed outside a doorway tells of a birth or marriage.
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