[Victoria, BC] Chinese New Year Celebrations in the Heart of Chinatown

In my youth, Chinese New Year meant going to Victoria, BC’s Chinatown with my parents and watching the lion dances held at this special time of the year. I recall fond memories when firecrackers were handed out to my dad, and he would let me hold the incense stick to light the firecrackers. He tossed them close to where the dancers were and they exploded. When nobody was looking, he even let me light and throw a few myself. That excitement gave life to those dances from decades ago. These days, due to fire regulations and safety, what’s done is a tamer comparison of what I fondly recall. At least the purpose remained the same: the noise is meant to scare the evil away so prosperity can enter the businesses.

On a variable cloudy day, the sun came out to shine on today’s celebrations. That’s a good sign for what’s to come. And I got to hang out with very good friends while we enjoyed watching the lions dance around the block that cumulated to a martial arts demonstration by the Hung Fut Kung Fu club, which has been around since 1974. I’ll let the pictures I took speak for itself:

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James’ Pick of the Events – June, 2012

Esquimalt’s Buccaneer Days
I may not have a peg leg but I knows a good pirate festival when I sees one. What true pirate can resist a fair? or refuse a pancake breakfast? A pirate has to have something to go down with the rum. Activities for the whole family including a parade, a craft and garden sale, children’s activity area and a Saturday night dance.

Vee Dub 9 Skateboard Competition
Much has changed since the days of being thrown from a banana board and today, the sport isn’t just for kids.

Island Chefs’ Collaborative Food Festival
What can be better than partaking in alcoholic beverages and food in the beautiful historic setting of Fort Rodd Hill. Names of the new businesses, the old establishments and the well established have served their wares at previous ICC Food Fests. Let’s hope for the sun on this one.

Christ Church Cathedral Community Fair
I can easily enjoy a good church social and the CCC’s Community Fair sounds very inviting. Here, I can look for local baked goods, And Gilbert & Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore will be performed. The Church has a strong history. They were graced 2 years ago by the presence of HRH the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. In the 1960’s CCC produced a record of songs performed by choir boy Bill Dyson.

First Peoples Festival
In elementary school, I was read the stories of Raven, I was also taken to see the Aboriginal People’s exhibit at the Royal BC Museum. Here at the festival, I can relive some fond memories of observing wood carvers, jewellers, and weavers ply their craft. Also, there will be knitters from Cowichan Valley and shamans teaching traditional medicine.

Fernwood Bites 2012
Victoria’s neighbourhood of Fernwood is “distinct.”

Topped by the crown jewel that is the Belfy Theatre, this commuity offers a decent amount of fine businesses to patronize Aubergine Specialty Foods, Fernwood Inn, The Little Piggy and Stir It Up.

Besides an excellent Vintage Fair, Fernwood Bites is a must attend. They offer many delights for attendees to savour. They have plenty of delicious food, fine wines and spirits. But it is the meeting of many creative individuals that make this scene an excellent venue for anyone to mingle in.

To those people who loathe the nightclub scene, this event is a refreshing salvation.