These days Chinese people all over the world are celebrating the new year, which is called the Year of the Tiger. These celebrations last for 15 days and consist of family reunions, socialising and amusements. On New Year's Eve they have a special family dinner in which they honour their ancestors. The last day of the celebrations is called Lantern Day because people carry lanterns in the streets to take part in a great parade in which young men make a dragon dance. This dragon is made of silk, paper and bamboo and stretches for several meters. The bobbing and weaving of the dragon is an impressive sight.
The Chinese New year is the second New Moon after the winter solstice, that's why the dates vary each year. The Chinese name the years after animals. There are 12 animal names:
Rat, Ox, Tiger, Hare, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Ram, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig. According to the Chinese horoscope, Tiger people are sensitive and capable of sympathy. If you want to know more about the Chinese animal zodiac go to the Chinese Culture Centre of San Francisco page
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