Valle Verde hosts Chinese new year celebration

February 20, 2018

 2018 is your year! It’s the year you get off the couch and start exercising, it’s the year you want to start saving but did you know it’s also the year of the dog? 


According to Chinese culture, every year there is a different animal represented in their new year tradition. It is typically celebrated between Jan. 21 to Feb. 20.
 

 

CARLOS RIOS/ TEJANO TRIBUNE

Two dancers demonstrate traditional Chinese fan dance at the Valle Verde Cafeteria Annex.



People who are associated with the dog year in China generally receive economic, career and personal challenges but they are viewed by others as people who can handle those situations. 


As a new way to reach out to both the Chinese community here in El Paso and to expand students’ cultural curiosity, Campus Life organized Valle Verde’s first Chinese New Year’s Event: The Year of the Dog. 


As part of the event, Edgemere Elementary, Western Hills Academy and Shaolin Wu Shu Kung Fu came and performed traditional dances, demonstrated martial arts and even provided a special Dragon Dance. 


As a way for students to be more immersed, food was provided.


Edgemere’s first and second graders performed “Hold My Hand” and “I love New Year.” 


Yan Li, Edgemere Elementary School language teacher, has been involved in the student’s presentation.


“The students are enrolled in language development that help them speak more than one language. Since Kindergarten, the students are taught to speak Chinese 30 minutes each day.

 

The most special thing of the New Year is the reunion dinner. Just like people here have Christmas eve, we have New Year’s Eve, where families come together.” 


The last event was performed by Jay Perez and his students. 


“I have been doing martial arts for 42 years, I lived in China for 6 years. Even though the Chinese community is small here in El Paso, compared to other places like California, it’s interesting to share this culture here.”


Wanting to leave an impression, Perez and his students showcased traditional martial arts and performed a dragon dance.


They also performed a ‘Fan Dance,’ in which two female dancers use fans to move in a synchronized rhythm.


 “It’s a great pleasure to be here, to see college students and share with them traditional Chinese culture.” 


Regardless if China is 7,000 miles away, organizations that made this event possible, did help us feel, as if we had a little piece of China here. 


“I’m happy that the students and people were able to enjoy this,” Karen Salinas, organizer, said. “We’re excited to do this next year.”    


For those who would like to learn more about Chinese culture, contact Shaolin WuShu Kung Fu. 


The organization is located at 3465 Lee Blvd #247.They can also be contacted via email at swkungfu@aol.com
 

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