Feature: Myanmar embraces Dragon Year Spring Festival celebration

Updated: February 20, 2024 Source: Xinhua News Agency
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YANGON, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- Amidst a burst of color and cultural exchange, Myanmar's local residents and overseas Chinese in the Southeast Asian country welcomed the auspicious Dragon Year Spring Festival with open arms.

On Sunday evening, the vibrant celebrations to mark the Chinese New Year took place at the Thuwunna National Indoor Sports Stadium (1) in Yangon, bringing together locals and Chinese expatriates.

The event, graced by the presence of State Administration Council Chairman Min Aung Hlaing and Chinese Ambassador to Myanmar Chen Hai, attracted over 500 people including officials, diplomats and businesspersons from Myanmar and China.

The celebration featured various cultural activities, including cultural booths and lion and dragon dances, among others.

Kaung Kaung, a 26-year-old lion and dragon dancer at the event, said, "I'm happy to attend the celebration. Lion and dragon dance is my favorite thing in the New Year celebration. Lion and dragon dance is also my life," adding that he has performed lion and dragon dances since he was 14 years old.

"I wish people good luck. May all people overcome all difficulties in this New Year," he added.

A friendly table tennis match between players from the Myanmar Table Tennis Federation (MTTF) and representatives from the Chinese embassy in Myanmar also took place during the event.

Aung Khant, a 16-year-old table tennis player from MTTF, said, "This is my first time participating in such an event. I'm very happy." The young Myanmar athlete also expressed his admiration for Chinese table tennis players, citing their top global rankings in the sport.

"I've come to know more about Chinese culture here," he said, adding that it is a celebration that can help promote China-Myanmar relations.

Cultural booths in the venue offered a tantalizing glimpse into Chinese traditions. From savory pork offal skewers to delicate Chinese steamed buns, visitors indulged in a culinary journey.

Among the culinary delights, pork offal skewers emerged as a crowd favorite, attracting many to Ko Than Myint's booth. "This is my first time participating in such a big celebration," the 55-year-old man said.

"I like everything related to pork. The things I like best in Chinese New Year are receiving red envelopes and eating many Chinese foods," he chuckled.

In addition to Chinese foods, vibrant Chinese attire and captivating photo galleries further enriched the cultural experience. Handicraft shops, floral displays, and exhibitions of Chinese art also added to the festive atmosphere, providing a feast for the senses.

Daw Tin Htay, a 49-year-old attendee capturing memories with her daughter, praised the festivities as an event for friendship. "My favorite things in the Chinese New Year are lion and dragon dances," she said, adding that such celebrations would help enhance China-Myanmar friendship.

U Tin Oo, chairman of the Myanmar-China Friendship Association, said, "It is an event organized by people of Chinese descent in Myanmar."

The shared aspiration of building a Myanmar-China community with a shared future holds deeper significance through this celebration, he added.

Editor: Yu Huichen