Happy Chinese/Lunar New Year: Many people of Asian descent will be celebrating Chinese or Lunar New Year beginning on February 16. Chinese New Year is the longest and most important festivity in the Chinese calendar. The origin of Chinese New Year is itself centuries old and gains significance because of several myths and traditions. Chinese New Year is celebrated in China and in countries and territories with significant Chinese and/or Asian populations, including Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, Mauritius, Philippines, and also in Chinatowns elsewhere. Chinese New Year is considered a major holiday for the Chinese and has had influence on the lunar new year celebrations of its geographic neighbours. Within China, regional customs and traditions concerning the celebration of the Chinese new year vary widely. People will pour out their money to buy presents, decorations, material, food, and clothing. It is also traditional for every family to thoroughly cleanse the house, in order to sweep away any ill-fortune and to make way for good incoming luck. Windows and doors will be decorated with red colour paper-cuts and couplets with popular themes of "good fortune" or "happiness", "wealth", and "longevity." On the Eve of Chinese New Year, supper is a feast with families. Food will include such items as pigs, ducks, chicken and sweet delicacies. The family will end the night with firecrackers. Early the next morning children will greet their parents by wishing them a healthy and happy new year, and receive money in red paper envelopes. The Chinese New Year tradition is to reconcile, forget all grudges and sincerely wish peace and happiness for everyone. According to the traditional Chinese calendar 2018 is the year of the dog. At Park West School we will be observing and celebrating Chinese / Lunar New Year in a variety of ways….with decorations, class presentations and activities. On Friday, February 16, students celebrating Chinese/Lunar New Year are invited to dress in their traditional festive clothing. Other students may wish to wear red and/or gold on that day in honour of the occasion. Park West School wishes all families celebrating Chinese / Lunar New Year a happy holiday.