After ‘rough’ times, New York vloggers are helping to ring in the Chinese New Year in the city

Red lanterns, couplet decorations, good luck envelopes and a giant bunny: dozens of New Yorkers stopped at a Chinese New Year booth in Manhattan’s Washington Square Park to collect their good fortune as the Year of the Rabbit arrives.

As New York City welcomed its Lunar New Year 2023 celebrations, Junqi Zhang and Guowei Sun, a New York-based team that runs a travel vlogging account with over 1 million followers on Chinese social media platforms, set up a booth to more for rent People know about the tradition.

The booth offered three activities for people to participate in: writing down their New Year’s wishes, hanging those wishes on the red lanterns, and choosing a red envelope with Chinese souvenirs inside.

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“Every year we try to come up with a creative and interactive idea for New Yorkers to learn about our culture,” Zhang told Fox News.

“[The year of] 2022 has been a tough year for a lot of people – so this year is about bringing everyone together.

A booth in Washington Square Park in Manhattan helped people celebrate Chinese New Year - the year of the rabbit - on January 22, 2023.

A booth in Washington Square Park in Manhattan helped people celebrate Chinese New Year – the year of the rabbit – on January 22, 2023.
(Shelly Xu/Fox News)

New Yorkers wrote their wishes on a small piece of red paper and then hung the paper on a lantern.

Many wished for health and peace – some wished for success in work and school.

Cecilia Wu works in New York City and has been away from home for over three years due to the COVID-19 virus.

“The first thing I wrote was that I want to have a healthy family because I’m having another baby. That’s the most important thing for me this year,” said a Brooklyn resident.

“I wished for infinite love for everyone,” said one NYU student.

The booth setup also attracted many Chinese.

"be able to celebrate [the Lunar New Year] with people all over the world and feeling a sense of home through such an event warms my heart," said a woman in New York City.

“Being able to party [the Lunar New Year] Being with people from all over the world and feeling at home at an event like this warms my heart,” said a woman in New York City.
(Shelly Xu/Fox News)

Cecilia Wu works in New York City and has been away from home for over three years due to the COVID-19 virus.

She said this event is a great opportunity to not only introduce Chinese culture to the people of the city, but also a way to connect with people like her who can’t make it home for this special occasion.

“Many of us haven’t been home for a long time,” Wu said.

January 22nd marked the beginning of the 2023 Lunar New Year and the beginning of the Year of the Rabbit – the fourth sign in the 12-year Chinese zodiac cycle.

“But to be able to celebrate this with people around the world and to feel at home through an event like this warms my heart.”

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The Chinese New Year is the most famous traditional festival in China, commonly known as the Spring Festival, “Guo Nian” or “Chun Jie”.

The festival signifies the beginning of spring and the arrival of the New Year.

January 22nd marked the beginning of the 2023 Lunar New Year and the beginning of the Year of the Rabbit – the fourth sign in the 12-year Chinese zodiac cycle.

The Asian American Federation says New York City is home to the state's largest Asian community -- with 1,525,851 residents making up 17.3% of the city's population.

The Asian American Federation says New York City is home to the state’s largest Asian community — with 1,525,851 residents making up 17.3% of the city’s population.
(Shelly Xu/Fox News)

According to Chinese tradition, the rabbit symbolizes calm, gentle and balanced energy for peace.

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The New Year celebration usually lasts several days.

Many other cultures in East and Southeast Asia also celebrate the festival, including Vietnamese and Korean communities.

Asian Americans are the country’s fastest growing population, according to the Pew Research Center.

According to the Asian American Federation, New York City is home to the state’s largest Asian community, with 1,525,851 residents making up 17.3% of the city’s population.

Asian Americans are also the fastest growing population in the country, according to the Pew Research Center.

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In June 2015, former New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio declared the Lunar New Year an official public school holiday. So the students had a day off on the Asian holiday.

“New York is such a magical place,” said Guowei Sun, the creative director of Zhang’s team.

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“People come from all places and cultures, have different desires – and despite all these differences, we still come together. On this special day, New York brings us unity and peace.”

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