New Year’s Eve has come and gone, but for many parts of Asia, that celebration is just about to begin. On Chinese New Year — which is on January 25, 2020 — the Year of the Earth Pig will officially be over and the Year of the Metal Rat will begin. This date is determined by the new lunar calendar — hence why it’s also called the Lunar New Year and why the date of the Chinese festival is always different. How to celebrate Chinese New Year 2020 in Canada?
Toronto Chinese New Year 2020
Chinese New Year 2020 Gala
The sixth annual CNTV Chinese New Year Celebration Gala returns to Toronto this February, and it’s known for being the largest extravaganza for the Chinese Community. Over eight hundred elite artists from Mainland China and Canada perform in the preeminent social networking event for the Chinese community.
Where: The Sony Centre for Performing Arts, 1 Front Street East
Price: From $36 to $168
Chinese New Year 2020 Count Down at Pacific Mall
Head to the largest indoor Chinese mall in North America to start the Chinese New Year celebrations! Entertainment starts at 10 pm and leads to the countdown at midnight for the arrival of the Year of the Rat. Celebrations at Pacific Mall continue until February 9.
Where: Pacific Mall, 7600 Kennedy Road
Price: No cost to attend
Dragon Ball 2020
The tradition continues! The Yee Hong Community Wellness Foundation’s annual benefit gala returns to celebrate Chinese New Year. Guests can look forward to a variety of exquisite cuisines in addition to a four-course dinner and silent and live auctions.
Where: Allstream Centre, Exhibition Place, 105 Princes’ Blvd.
Price: Tickets start at $480
Lunar New Year 2020: The Year of the Rat
You can celebrate the Year of the Rat as you learn how an Italian painter became one of the most beloved artists for three emperors in the Qing Dynasty and contributed to the Chinese paintings today. Visitors can also get hands-on and make their own Rat Hero paper lantern, then take a money bath and hit the “gong” for good fortune.
Where: Varley Art Gallery of Markham, 216 Main Street
Toronto Chinese New Year Ball
The Hong Kong-Canada Business Association celebrates the Year of the Rat with a ball that includes traditional lion dancing, Chinese games, food, silent auctions and more.
Where: 600 Highway 7, Richmond Hill
Price: Individual tickets start at $220
Vancouver Chinese New Year 2020
A Vancouver cultural festivity that you won’t want to miss is Chinatown‘s New Year’s parade. There is no need to travel abroad to experience China – on this day you’ll find yourself surrounded by about a billion Chinese and other Vancouverites, the occasional colourful dragon, and numerous bands and people in costumes marching down the streets.
In 2020 the parade celebrates the Year of the Pig and the event’s 46th year with about six dozen entries comprising over 3000 participants. Expect to see marching bands, Chinese lion dancing and entries by numerous community businesses and non-profit groups.
At Vancouver’s Chinese New Year Parade sidewalks along the route are packed full of people, the sounds of fire crackers fill the air and Chinatown is without a question the most exciting place in the city to be.
New Year Parade Route
The parade goes down West Pender under the Chinatown Millennium Gate, up Gore Street, and then back up along Keefer. In total the route is about 1.3 kilometres in length and lasts for two or more hours.
Chinese New Year 2020 Parade Video
Below is a short video of the parade in Vancouver’s Chinatown. It was filmed last year and will give you an idea of what to expect on February 10th in 2019.
The video starts and finishes from a parkade looking down at the corner of Carrall Street and Keefer. The second scene is of a lion dance going down the parade route along East Pender. The third scene is of parade participants marching west along Keefer Street.
Tips for Parade Viewing in Toronto
Below are some tips and suggestions to help you maximize your Chinatown Parade experience.
TIP 1: On Keefer Street by Columbia there is a giant building with a parkade with the words “CHINATOWN” written down the side on a red and yellow neon sign. If you want a good view, and want to be above the crowds, this can be a great place to be. Look up from the street, and you can see people peering down and enjoying the parade from a comfortable and less congested distance.
TIP 2: Either before or after the parade, consider visiting International Village at 88 West Pender. This interesting yet normally fairly quiet shopping mall completely comes alive. Inside, in addition to thousands of people, you’ll find an assortment of performances and stalls selling all kinds of festive items.
TIP 3: While in Chinatown, check out the festivities at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden at 578 Carrall Street. Running from 10 am to 4 pm, the festivities there include dance performances, live music, a lion dance and other family-friendly cultural activities. Admission is by donation. Expect the place to be busy!
Richmond Chinese New Year 2020
Lunar New Year Festival is your guide to discovering the abundance of Lunar New Year events across Vancouver and Richmond!
January 25, 2020 marks the Year of the Rat
It’s time to celebrate Chinese New Year 2020. The celebration, also known as the Spring Festival or Lunar Festival, lasts between seven to 15 days, starting this year on January 25, and you can find community celebrations in most Canadian communities during that time.
On Saturday, at 2 p.m. Langley residents can celebrate at the Muriel Arnason Library, in Langley, B.C., which is celebrating its 11th annual Chinese New Year, with Chinese dance and music, displays, make a craft and a lucky envelope, and taste some New Year’s foods.
Other Chinese New Year community events in Vancouver and Richmond can be found here. Bigger crowds will descend on larger parades and festivals often held in the area’s Chinatown, like Vancouver Chinatown Spring Festival Parade on Sunday, at 11 a.m. in Chinatown. Or the Toronto Chinatown Chinese New Year celebration, at Dragon City Mall and Chinatown Centre.