University Branch Library to celebrate Chinese Lunar New Year

Chinese Lantern Festival Feb. 15

In recognition of the Chinese Lunar New Year, Fort Bend County Libraries will celebrate with a Chinese Lantern Festival on Saturday, February 15, from 2:00 to 4:00 pm, in the lobby of the University Branch Library, 14010 University Blvd in Sugar Land, on the UH campus.

The festival will feature authentic red lanterns that were presented to Fort Bend County by representatives of Chancheng District, of Foshan City, China. The lanterns will hang in the lobby of the library for the day’s festivities.

Dancing lions, made possible by the generosity of Safari Texas Ranch, will entertain visitors at 2:30 pm, and a crafts station will be set up so that children can make their own paper lanterns to take home with them. Everyone can join in playing Cai Deng Mi, or “Guessing the Lantern’s Riddle,” and win a prize if the answer is correct!

The Chinese Lantern Festival marks the culmination of the Chinese Lunar New Year celebration. The festival is part of an ancient ceremony welcoming spring, and the lantern symbolizes the lengthening days of the season. It is also thought to ward off evil spirits.

County and business leaders from Fort Bend County signed a Memorandum of Understanding with delegates from the City of Foshan in 2012, signifying an alignment between Fort Bend and Chancheng District on mutual economic, cultural and environmental issues. In November of 2012, representatives from the two entities signed a Friendship Agreement, which is in essence a contract stating that the two sides will work together to promote exchanges and cooperation in the fields of economy, trade, sports, environmental protection, science, technology, education, medical research and culture, in an effort to promote mutual prosperity and development.

Foshan is a city in central Guangdong province, located in southern China, with a population of 3.6 million. Chancheng District was chosen for the Memorandum of Understanding because of the similarities it shares with Fort Bend County, including population growth, business growth, and a focus on education, medical, and cultural amenities.

The Chinese Lantern Festival activities are free and open to the public. For more information, call the branch library at 281-633-5100 or the library’s Public Information Office at 281-341-2677.

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