The Lunar New Year begins on Friday, Feb. 16. Here are some of our picks for the best ways to celebrate throughout the month. Wherever you go, don’t forget to say “Gung hay fat choy!” or “congratulations, and may you have a prosperous new year!”
Lunar New Year at Prospect Park Zoo
450 Flatbush Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11225
Kick off the Year of the Dog by visiting wild dogs—better known as dingoes—at the Prospect Park Zoo. (FYI: Dingoes are feral dogs native to Australia.) In addition to watching them frolic and romp, you and your little ones can listen to keepers talk about caring for all kinds of zoo creatures, gobble fortune cookies, learn the fine art of calligraphy, attend a puppet show, and participate in a zodiac scavenger hunt. Weekends in February, see schedule for details, tickets required.
Firecracker Ceremony and Cultural Festival
Sara D. Roosevelt Park
Grand Street at Forsyth Street
New York, NY
If you can only make one event to usher in the Lunar New Year, consider this one: the 19th annual New Year Firecracker Ceremony and Cultural Festival features some 500,000 firecrackers, considered a primary means of warding off evil spirits and welcoming an excellent new year. The kid-friendly event also includes traditional crafts and dancers. Go hungry! Some say that the amount of dumplings you eat correlates to the amount of money you’ll earn the rest of the year. Friday, February 16, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., free.
Chinese New Year Concert and Gala
David Geffen Hall
10 Lincoln Center Plaza
New York, NY 10023
Celebrate the Year of the Dog with a touch of elegance at the New York Philharmonic’s annual Chinese New Year Concert and Gala. This year’s program features Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Li Huanzhi’s Spring Festival Overture. As a special treat, Ricochet—a concerto for percussion, orchestra, violin, and ping pong (yes, ping pong!)—by Andy Akiho, will make its U.S. debut. Tuesday, February 20, concert begins at 7:30 pm, gala includes pre-concert champagne and post-concert dinner, separate tickets required.