Celebrating the Year of the Tiger
LAUGHTER filled the conference room at Maryborough Neighbourhood Centre yesterday as residents from diverse backgrounds joined together in celebration of the Chinese New Year.
Red and gold lanterns decorated the tables and a delicious Chinese meal was shared by the women who came together with stories of their own cultures and to learn more about Chinese traditions.
Sunday marked the first day of the 15-day Spring Festival celebrated by Chinese people.
The festival starts on a different date each year and is based on the lunar calendar.
Each year is symbolised by an animal – 2010 is the Year of the Tiger.
Chinese New Year celebrations are typified by the colour red, which symbolises joy and good fortune. Families come together to enjoy great food and street parades feature dragons, which are meant to scare off evil spirits.
The lunch at Maryborough was an initiative of the Migrant Settlement Program, which offers information and support to migrants to help them settle into their new home in Australia.
Migrants from the Philippines, Spain, Argentina and Jamaica could be found at the Neighbourhood Centre yesterday, as well as several Australian-born residents with mixed cultural backgrounds.