Chinese Lunar New Year Celebrations 2017

  • Fri Jan 27 2017
  • Family
  • $0.00

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From Lunar Lanterns to zodiac inspired arts and crafts, Sydney’s 2017 Chinese New Year Festival promises a feast of fun events and activities for the whole family.

From 27 January to 12 February, children of all ages can share in the wonder of Lunar New Year traditions and celebrations, while learning about the Chinese zodiac and animals. Choosing from a range of FREE and ticketed events, kids can decorate a life-sized rickshaw, learn lion dance movement, make a Rooster and share in bilingual storytime at City of Sydney libraries.

Chinese New Year Festival highlights for children include:

Lunar Lanterns
Bring the kids to see 12 enormous and spectacular zodiac animal lanterns ranging in sizes up to 10 metres in height on the ultimate lantern trail at Circular Quay. The lanterns represent the 12 Chinese Zodiac animals, including new Rooster, Pig, Rat and Snake lanterns that will delight and amaze the whole family. Kids will be able to sound the ‘gong’ belly of one of the five roosters in Chinatown, marvel at a glistening 23m snake, climb aboard a glowing chariot pulled by 3.5m high horses & LOTS more!

Where:    From the Sydney Opera House to Dawes Point Circular Quay, with an additional Rooster lantern in Chinatown
When:      27 January–12 February
Cost:        Free

Community Performances
Marvel at the wonderful pop-up style performances by approximately 40 groups from Sydney’s Chinese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese and Japanese communities. More than 1,000 performers will bring the city’s streets to life with hip hop, children’s performances, folk dance, martial arts and traditional dance performances. Visit for performance details.

Where:    Customs House Square forecourt and Martin Place
When:      27 January–12 February (Friday and Saturday evenings)
Cost:         Free

Traditional Chinatown Celebrations
Chinatown is always the cultural heart of the Sydney Chinese New Year Festival and a great place to visit for an authentic traditional Lunar New Year experience. For 17 days, Chinatown will come alive with the sights and sounds of Lion Dance performances and traditional New Year firecrackers.

Where:   Dixon Street Mall, Chinatown
When:     27 January–12 February (various dates/times)
Cost:        Free

China In Sydney – International Delegations Performances
This year the City of Sydney welcomes visiting artists from China’s south-west province of Sichuan and the north-western province of Shaanxi. Be amazed by international Sichuan Art Group performing ancient, unique art of ‘Face Changing’ where brightly dressed actors change more than 10 dramatic masks in less than 20 seconds. Also on show the exquisite skills of the Chuanbei Big Puppet Show, featuring intricately handcrafted, large scale puppets that look like people and dance like fairies, as well as a surprising, fire-spitting puppet.

Where:    Customs House Forecourt, Circular Quay and Dixon Street Mall, Chinatown
When:      27 January–12 February (various dates/times)
Cost:         Free

China In Sydney – International Delegations Workshops
Hands-on workshops and demonstrations lead by artists from Sichuan province (2017 international delegation from China). Children will delight in learning the ancient art techniques of sugar painting, lantern making, dough modelling, shadow puppets and New Year painting.

Where:    Customs House Forecourt
When:      Sunday 5 February; 4pm – 7pm
Cost:         Free

Drop In And Make: Year of the Rooster
Get creative and make your own Rooster to celebrate the Lunar New Year. For children with their parents or carers. All materials and instructions provided.

Where:   Art Gallery of NSW, Art Gallery Road, The Domain, Sydney
When:    29 Jan, 5 and 12 Feb 2017 – 11am–4pm
Cost:       Free

Dragon Boat Races
Kids and adults alike are invited to watch the thrilling races as flamboyantly decorated 12-metre-long boats compete in the annual Dragon Boat Races. Roving entertainment throughout the day.

Where:   Cockle Bay, Darling Harbour
When:     11 and 12 February
Cost:        Free

Rickshaw Tales: Family Program
In partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art – decorate a life-sized rickshaw and go on an artist-led story walk.

Where:   Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour
When:     4 Feb and 5 Feb at 12.30pm – 3.30pm
Cost:        Free, gold coin donation to the Chinese Garden of Friendship

The Plucky Rooster Workshop
Create playful rooster-inspired paper crafts in a hands-on workshop conducted by award-winning designers Make Creative, then take your artworks home to enjoy. Make Creative are the award-winning designers of The Emperor’s Quest.

Where:    Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour
When:      11 February, 1–2pm and 2.30–3.30pm
Cost:         Free, gold coin donation to the Chinese Garden of Friendship

Monkey Tales In The Garden Presented By Monkey Baa Theatre
Award winning Monkey Baa Theatre Company will take families on a journey around the Chinese Garden of Friendship with a hilarious fable celebrating the playful monkey and fabulous, flamboyant rooster. This fast-paced site-specific work promises to amuse and delight. For children 8 – 12 years.

Where:    Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour
When:      3, 4 and 5 February, 6pm and 7.30pm
Cost:         $20 adult $10 child

Bilingual Storytelling/Lion Dance And Movement Workshop
Celebrate Chinese New Year with bilingual storytime in Mandarin and English – a unique opportunity to meet the Chinese lion and learn some of the lion’s moves.

Where:   Green Square Library, Glebe Library and Ultimo Library
When:     6 Feb, 11am–11.45, Green Square Library
7 Feb, 11am–11.45 am, Ultimo Library
7 Feb, 1.30pm–2.15pm, Glebe Library
Cost:        Free

Row, Row Regattas! Family Fun Day
Celebrate the traditions of dragon boat racing and regattas at the Australian National Maritime Museum family fun day featuring lively performances, lion dancing, face painting, dress ups, creative crafts and spectacular on-water displays.

Where:    Australian National Maritime Museum, Darling Harbour
When:     Sunday 5 Feb – 11am–4pm
Cost:         $8.50 child, $7 adult or included in any paid museum admission. Museum members free


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