The Year of the Snake is here, but that doesn’t mean you’re going to get stabbed in the back or swallowed whole.
If you’re an Asian-American in Sacramento—Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Mongolian or Tibetan, that is—chances are you celebrated Lunar New Year with your family this week. If not, don’t worry: There are a few public community celebrations happening where you can still mingle with friends or party with peers. Here are a few ways to help ring in the Year of the Snake.
1. Celebrate the Tet Festival with the Vietnamese American Community of Sacramento
This annual celebration features plenty of delicious food vendors, craft vendors, carnival rides, resource booths, and a health-and-wellness fair. There are also a variety of performances by community dance troupes, local children and Vietnamese pop singers. It begins with a parade down Stockton Boulevard (from Fowler Avenue to Florin Road) on Saturday, February 16, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. The free festival happens in a parking lot on the corner of Stockton Boulevard and Florin Road on Saturday, February 16, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, February 17, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/vietnameseamer
2. Attend a Chinese New Year celebration
Join the Chinese New Year Culture Association for its annual celebration at the Scottish Rite Masonic Center (6151 H Street) this Saturday, February 16. The party features an elaborate stage program from noon to 5 p.m., with traditional dances, Chinese pop songs, a fashion show, opera music, acrobats and even a “Gangnam Style” dance performance (so what if it’s Korean?). There will also be children’s games and vendors from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $6 for adults and $1 for children under 12 years old. For more information, visit www.cnyca.net.
3. Head to a Korean restaurant for some tteokguk
Though Sacramento isn’t known for big celebrations involving its Korean community, this is one delicious tradition you don’t want to pass up. Many Koreans eat tteokguk, a type of rice-cake soup, on Lunar New Year’s Day for good luck. Just for reference, it’s similar to Shanghai-style nian gao, a Chinese dish eaten for good luck on New Year’s Day. OK, still confused? Just head to any traditional Korean restaurant on Folsom Boulevard and ask for the dish.