Top Ways To Celebrate Lunar New Year In Connecticut

January 20, 2014 8:00 AM

Philippines (Ted Aljibe/AFP/Getty Images)

Any and every new year deserves to be welcomed in – whether it is the calendar year 2014 for the zodiac-themed Chinese or Lunar New Year, which this time around is associated with what many consider man’s true best friend – the Horse. Here are just five places (and different ways) to celebrate and mark this Lunar New Year in Connecticut.

Chinese Culture Center New Year Gala
Herbert D. Welte Hall Auditorium
Central Connecticut State University
1615 Stanley St.
New Britain, CT 06050
(860) 832-2278

Date: Jan. 25, 2014

The Chinese Culture Center will mark the Lunar New Year almost a week early as it hosts a Gala Show on January 25. The celebration will be held at the Herbert D. Welte Hall Auditorium of Central Connecticut State University. The program is still in the process of being finalized, as the staff is interviewing, vetting and auditioning talent. The Chinese Culture Center has been working with colleges, businesses and the community in Connecticut since 1980 to “enhance social exchange” and the “sharing of knowledge” between the people of China and Connecticut. As part of its goal of presenting and promoting Chinese culture, it hosts many gatherings and events (including picnics) throughout the year, and the staff members tasked with organizing it, Ning Lin and John Yuan, expect the 2014 Lunar New Year gala to be every bit as educational and as entertaining as that held in 2013, which featured speakers, skits, magic, martial arts and music.

Organization of Chinese Americans Chinese New Year Dinner Dance
P.O. Box 16492
Stamford, CT 06907

Date: Jan. 25, 2014

The Dragon Dance to welcome in the Year of the Horse will open the festivities on Saturday night, January 25, as the Organization of Chinese Americans Fairfield County Chapter (or OCAFC) holds its annual Chinese New Year Dinner Dance. Attendees need not be members of the organization, as admission to the party and its 10-course feast is open to the public, subject to availability of tickets. Partygoers will dine well and be entertained by international award-winning violinist Richard Lin, concert pianist Dr. Tienni Chen and the organization’s chorus led by Ms. Jacky Wang. The party will be held at the Stamford Hilton Hotel and Executive Meeting Center is located at 1 1st Stamford Place, Stamford, CT, 06902.

Sur La Table Chinese New Year Date Night Cooking Class
110 Albany Turnpike #609
Canton, CT 06019
(800) 693-9560

Date: Jan. 31, 2014

Why go out for Chinese on Lunar New Year? Why not make it a date night and learn how to cook Chinese? Starting at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, January 31, 2014, the staff at Sur La Table in Canton will “ring in the New Year in delicious style” as they teach those who sign up for this class how to prepare classic and inventive dishes in the Cantonese, Shandong and Szechuan styles. For just $69 per student, the 2.5-hour-long class will impart skills that can make any night a Chinese New Year celebration (and nobody goes home hungry, as there is a group tasting of the Chinese delights made by the class).

The Chinese Language School Of Connecticut Fundraiser
P.O. Box 515
Riverside, CT 06878
(866) 301-4906

Date: Jan. 26, 2014

To celebrate the Chinese New Year and raise funds for its school, every year for the last 11 years, the Chinese Language School of Connecticut has hosted a combined festival and fundraiser. On Sunday, January 26, it will make it an even dozen, with the celebrations starting at noon and continuing until three in the afternoon. Adults are $52, children ages three through 16 are $32 and little ones under three are free. Revelers will be treated to traditional Chinese food and entertainment, along with demonstrations of Chinese arts, crafts and culture. All of this will be presented in the elegant atmosphere of the Stamford Hilton (a relief from those who have seen one too many school auditoriums or gyms decorated for events). The Stamford Hilton Hotel and Executive Meeting Center is located at 1 1st Stamford Place, Stamford, CT, 06902.

Chinese Arts Festival
Yale-China Association
442 Temple St.
New Haven, CT 06511
(203) 432-0880

Date: Feb. 9, 2014

A week after others have rung in the Lunar New Year with song, dance and food, the Yale-China Association will do so with a festival of Chinese art. The day-long event will begin with a Dragon Dance and parade along Whitney and Temple Streets at 10 a.m. on Sunday, February 9, and will continue until 5 p.m. Dancers will wind their way past the specialty shops that line the route and there will be “hands-on” workshops and demonstrations in Chinese art and culture.

Mark G. McLaughlin is a professional and prolific writer with a proven publishing record in a wide variety of fields. An historian, novelist, freelance journalist, ghost-writer, book reviewer, magazine editor, web and magazine columnist, Mark has more than 30 years of experience. His work can be found at

Listen Live