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Lunar New Year celebration set for Seattle's International District

To celebrate the Lunar New Year and welcome the Year of the Snake, the Chinatown–International District Business Improvement Area (CIDBIA) will host its annual Lunar New Year Celebration on Feb. 9 in the International District. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be held in the area around Hing Hay Park at 423 Maynard Avenue South in Seattle.

The celebration will feature traditional lion and dragon dances, Japanese taiko drumming, a children’s parade, restaurant specials, and more.

Many restaurants will also feature a $2 tasting menu exclusive to the Lunar New Year celebration.

“The Chinatown–ID is a regional destination for those best seeking international cuisine — and this year the festival will allow everyone to try some, without putting a dent in their wallets," said CIDBIA Executive Director Don Blakeney.

Making another appearance will be the 3rd Annual Children’s Parade and Contest. The parade will cover one city block, in front of the Northwest Asian Weekly's office, near Hing Hay Park to South King Street. A portion of the parade will cross an elevated stage where parents will be able to take photos. All children 12 years old and younger are welcome to participate. Children too young to walk may be accompanied by a family member.

Participants should wear culturally relevant or traditional Asian clothing.

However, for families that do not own traditional Asian clothing, children may wear red and gold (or yellow) clothing and still participate.

“After the joy, fun, and excitement from the parade last year, we’re excited to host the parade again,” said Assunta Ng, publisher of the Northwest Asian Weekly and Seattle Chinese Post. “There was a mom carrying her 6-month-old baby who was wearing a gorgeous costume. There were three kids making and forming a dragon; I was totally impressed with the creativity in the whole parade.”

Prizes will be given out to those with the most elaborate and unique costume. A panel of judges will pick three winners. First place will receive a cash prize of $100, second place $50, and third place $25. Each participant will also receive a stuffed panda bear.

Parade participants may pre-register before Feb. 5, will receive a stuffed panda while supplies last. You may register on-site. On-site registrations will be accepted before 1 p.m. on Feb. 9, in front of the NWAW/SCP news building (412 Maynard Avenue South, Seattle). The parade starts at 1:30 p.m. The winners will be announced at 2 p.m.

You can register by email by contacting rsvp@nwasianweekly.com by Feb. 5. Go www.nwasianweekly.com on the upper left of the front page and click on lunar new year kids' parade.

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