The Chinese Association of Saipan, CNMI and the Korean Association of Saipan will be holding a joint celebration of the Lunar New Year for two consecutive Saturdays, Feb. 13 and 20, at the Paseo de Marianas in Garapan.
CAS and KAS officials last week held separate ribbon-cutting ceremonies to kick off their festivities. They also decorated PDM with red-and blue-colored paper lanterns that liven up the tourist destination at night.
CAS president Jerry Tan said that it would be a historic and special Lunar New Year as both the Chinese and Korean communities joined together to celebrate and offer entertainment featuring both cultures.
The traditional Chinese lion dance will open up the festivities starting at 5pm. Students of the Chinese School of Saipan will take the stage next with a song and dance number, and more Chinese folk songs.
A bian lian performance, or the ancient Chinese dramatic art of face-changing, and acrobats from Beijing, Kung Fu exhibition, and a Chinese magician are the other performances lined up.
A local K-Pop group will open up the Korean program that also includes a Taekwondo exhibition and magic. Food stalls and art and cultural exhibits will also be offered.
Tan said it will be a historic celebration of the event here on Saipan with both the Chinese and Korean cultures having a lot of similarities especially when it comes to celebrating the Lunar New Year.
“We both celebrate the Year of the Monkey. This event is the first joint Lunar New Year Celebration with these two cultures and we look forward to celebrating it with the community and the tourists who will be on Saipan during this time,” said Tan.
KAS president Hong Kyun Kim is thankful for the Chinese community in making the plan a reality this year.
“Thank you to [CAS] for extending the invitation to join them this year. The Korean community is excited and we will be bringing our food, talent, and culture to this event to share with everyone,” said Kim.
The Marianas Visitors Authority and the Paseo de Marianas Promoters Inc. are also sponsoring the event in their joint effort of showcasing the cultural diversity of the CNMI to visiting tourists.