February 5th marks the start of the Chinese New Year and according to the zodiac cycle it is the year of the Golden Pig. Across the planet some of the activities include putting up decorations; eating reunion dinner with family on New Year’s Eve; and firecrackers and fireworks. Edmund Kwan, President of the Belize Chinese Association told us what to expect in Belize City this weekend.
Edmund Kwan President, Belize Chinese Association: “The Chinese Zodiac goes in a 60 year cycle which every twelve years the animals come again. 12 animals and then each cycle they use the elements of nature: fire, gold, water, wood and soil. Today is the Chinese New Year and the starting of the year of the Golden Pig. We are having celebrations by the Belize Chinese Association this weekend and on Saturday we are going to do a citywide parade with the Lion Dance at different Chinese stores and establishments requesting services and then on Sunday we have our annual banquet where this year we have 70 tables, almost 800 guest who will congregate and dine and have lunch together at the Ramada Kings Room. The Chinese Association was formed in 1981. I am not sure the exact date but it is the same year that Belize got Independence. Every year they do have celebrations but gradually we are trying to grow it to include more and more people because there is a larger population of Chinese in Belize and also a lot of Chinese are inviting local Belizean guests to the Banquet to celebrate New Years. For New Years traditionally for Chinese it is like a family and friends gathering.”
The parade with fireworks will take place through some Belize City streets on Saturday.