The Chinese Student Scholars Association will ring in the New Year with bright red decorations as preparations commence for the Chinese New Year festival at 6 p.m. Feb. 8 in the Hunter Welcome Center.
The Chinese New Year occurs on the second new moon of the winter solstice and celebrates the end of winter and beginning of spring.
Steven Qin, sophomore computer science major from Shanghai, said the festival is meant to celebrate the New Year and come together with friends and family instead of remaining busy.
“Most of the Chinese students and scholars are here away from family,” said Qin, officer in CSSA. “Therefore, CSSA hosts this celebration every year in order to create a similar environment for all Chinese in Abilene to hang out and enjoy.”
Prentice Ashford, director of multicultural affairs, said a large population of students are classified as being of Chinese descent and it is important to recognize them as much as any other culture.
“It is a time to celebrate and learn about Chinese customs, eat some traditional Chinese food,” Ashford said. ” Other students will be able to join in a festival, a tradition from the Chinese culture.”
The festival will include several elements of Chinese culture, including a Chinese buffet, fun activities, prizes, entertainment and traditional Chinese music.
“By doing that as a CSSA tradition, we believe it can help reinforce and spread our culture and remind our Chinese students and scholars of home and family and friends,” said Qin. “Most importantly is to remind them that we are still Chinese.”
Ashford said it is a good opportunity for people to learn about another culture and experience it here on campus.
Qin said that the event is completely free but tickets are limited. Any students can pick up tickets in the Campus Center on Thursday and Friday or at the door if space permits.