Year of the Horse Spring Festival Celebration in Wigan

[Source]    Confucius Classroom at Wigan and Leigh College [Time]    2014-02-07 11:07:38 

In the freezing cold but sunshine December of Chinese Lunar Calendar, the Chinese Spring Festival is coming. To celebrate the Chinese lunar New Year with Confucius Classroom at Wigan and Leigh College has been a big happy event for Wigan people. Since 2009, the Confucius Classroom has celebrated Chinese Lunar New Year with Wigan local people 5 times. Walking in the Wigan center and talking with the local people, you will be surprised that most people know this year will be year of the horse, and some of them even know which day will be the lunar New Year’s Day. Some people could also remember the order of the previous years’ Chinese Zodiac animals and know some customs of traditional Chinese New Year as well. The Confucius Classroom really did a lot for promoting and has been affect Wigan people.

In recent years, China has raising global presence, and the influence is rising up. To hold the Chinese New Year celebration has been a direct way for Wigan people know more about Chinese traditional culture. More and more British people start to learn speaking Chinese, writing Chinese characters, tasting Chinese tea and watching Chinese shows. They really feel joyful. More students wants to make their “ China Dream” come true through the Confucius Classroom. The other departments always invite stuffs of Confucius Classroom to join their Chinese New Year decoration and some other activities.

From the plan to operation, this celebration is supported by Wigan and Leigh College, Wigan Council and Wigan Life Museum. It makes a big effect in Wigan. Through the hardworking of staffs and volunteers at Wigan and Leigh College International Office, Confucius Classroom and Wigan Life Museum, the celebration is held very successfully. It attracts a lot of local citizens to come. The Newspaper and and some local medium all report our celebration.

Year of the horse celebration includes three parts: Lion Dance in the Street of Wigan center and Wigan Life Museum, Chinese calligraphy experience and tasting the Chinese Kung Fu Tea. The celebration is held on Saturday so that there are a lot of people shopping in the city center. We arrange the first Lion Dance show in the biggest shopping mall of the city. After watching the Lion Dance, people are being guided to the Wigan Life Museum by the volunteers to join the Chinese calligraphy and taste Chinese Kung Fu Tea.

Children are taking pictures with the Lion Dance Troupe

Chinese Calligraphy and Kung Fu Tea are both the important part of Chinese traditional culture. They are well-known by the foreigners. Volunteers guide People using the “magic brush” write their Chinese names on the soft “cloth”, and carefully take their works back home for commemorate. Most people who join our celebration are parents with their children. Many primary school students are interested in Chinese calligraphy. We reward them the gift money and some little gift and encourage them to study Chinese and could know more about Chinese culture in the future.

Look at our works

When tasting the Chinese tea, every one enjoy the Chinese “leaves”. Although it is a little bitter, it smells good. After drinking, they could feel the fresh. No matter they are young or old, they all praised the special taste with delighted alacrity. Some people are surprise and say, “is this just tea? You haven’t added anything? It is special, I really like it.” Some other people say, “I usually know Chinese tea is famous, today I could watch the Chinese Kung Fu Tea ceremony and taste the real Chinese tea. That’s super!”

The whole celebration lasts 4 hours. By the end of the event, the children with their parents take photos with the Lion Dance show and then leave the museum wistfully. All the staffs and local citizens has a significant afternoon. The enthusiasm join and satisfied smile is the motive power for the Confucius Classroom in the New Year. We will keep the vigorous spirit and promote marrows in Chinese culture to Wigan and spread out in the UK. Let more people know more about China, and make their “China Dreams” come true.

By Yang Qingqing