Every year, the Chinese New Year is celebrated for more than two weeks in January or February, with many festivals and celebrations commemorating the occasion. On the first day of the New Year, the festival kicks off with the Firecracker Ceremony, during which locals light nearly 600,000 rounds of fireworks.
Last Thursday, we headed down to New York City’s Chinatown to see the community’s 16th annual Firecracker Ceremony. The community was celebrating the beginning of the Year of the Goat.
It is a tradition for Chinese people to light bamboo sticks filled with gunpowder on the first day of the year to create as large as commotion as possible. The practice is thought to ward off evil spirits. In more recent years, the tradition is carried on with firecrackers and fireworks. Thousands of firecrackers are strung up with red ribbon on the rope in the background.