Goodbye, Monkey — Hello, Rooster; New Lunar Year Starts Jan. 28

The 2017 lunar calendar's Year of the Rooster starts Jan. 28. As the clever but naughty monkey of 2016 departs, the rooster brings traits such as loyalty, punctuality and confidence. Those born under this sign are said to be active, hardworking, talkative and honest. Some personalities born in the Year of the Rooster include Matthew McConaughey, Diane Sawyer, Natalie Portman, Elton John, Serena Williams, Catherine the Great, Amelia Earhart and Groucho Marx. Many area Asian groups will celebrate the start of the new year with festivals and dinners. One celebration will be the Crow Collection's Chinese New Year Festival on Jan. 28. Highlights include lion and dragon dances, family art activities, calligraphy demonstrations, fortune telling, kung fu, Beijing Opera renditions, Chinese dances and a fireworks finale. Admission is free.The U.S. Postal Service commemorates the lunar new year with a stamp. The 2017 lunar new year stamp features a red envelope (hongbao) decorated with a colorful illustration of a rooster perched on a cherry blossom branch. The characters at the top of the illustration form a common Chinese greeting of celebration and wish for prosperity and good fortune. Art director Ethel Kessler created the stamp design combining original artwork by Kam Mak with two elements from the previous series of lunar new year stamps. This is the 10th stamp in the Celebrating Lunar New Year series.  Continue reading...

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