Lunar Year parade brightens rainy day

It might have rained on their parade, but spectators at Vancouver’s annual Chinese Lunar Year celebration yesterday didn’t let the weather dampen their spirits.

It might have rained on their parade, but spectators at Vancouver’s annual Chinese Lunar Year celebration yesterday didn’t let the weather dampen their spirits.

Onlookers, huddled under awnings and umbrellas, lined Pender and Keefer streets in Chinatown to watch the 34th annual Chinese New Year parade, which featured more than 50 colourful lion dancers.

Susan Mah, who watched the parade with her five-year-old daughter Clarice, said she comes every year, “rain or shine.”

“It’s a tradition,” Mah said. “I do it for (Clarice) because she’s being raised in a North American society, so I want to pass on some Chinese traditions to her, too. And she likes it, too.”

Clarice said her favourite parts of the parade are the dragon dancers and the red candy-filled envelopes participants hand out to children.

“I like Chinese New Year,” Clarice said. “It’s my favourite holiday.”

Kevin Wu came downtown with his family from Surrey.

“We do it for the kids, (so they can) get the feeling of the Chinese New Year,” he said. “It’s important for them to know their culture and background.”

Wu said New Year is the biggest holiday in Chinese culture, and the parade is something fun and happy to look forward to in the middle of the cold, rainy winter.