Celebrate the Year of the Monkey in NYC in February with firecrackers, parades, dancing and more. Most of these Lunar New Year festivals and events are FREE, and all are family-friendly. Here’s where to celebrate in Manhattan, Queens, Bronx and Brooklyn.
Unless a fee is mentioned, the events are FREE.
Saturday, February 6, 2016
Lunar New Year: Year of the Monkey Celebration: A performance of traditional Chinese dance and music, a martial arts demonstration, theatrical players in full traditional make-up and regalia, and the Monkey King himself, and a dynamic Lion Parade. Presented in partnership with the New York Chinese Cultural Center. The festivities begin at 1:30pm at Brookfield Place Winter Garden in Lower Manhattan.
Losar Family Day: Learn about traditional celebrations of the Himalayan New Year at the Rubin Museum in Chelsea, including a family tour of the galleries, traditional music, and making auspicious crafts to take home. Free with museum admission. Noon to 4pm.
Monday, February 8, 2016
17th New Year Firecracker Ceremony and Cultural Festival: This annual celebration takes place in Sara D. Roosevelt Park, on the Lower East Side, 11am to 4pm. Event website.
Saturday, February 13, 2016
Celebrating Lunar New Year 2016: Activities include a traditional Lion Dance, martial arts performance, family games and arts & crafts, a costume contest and a traditional dance and music performance. At P. S. 105, 1031 59th Street in Bay Ridge. 11am to 2:30 p.m. Event website.
Lunar New Year Parade: Flushing is home to one of the city’s largest Asian communities, and the parade here rivals the better-known one in Manhattan’s Chinatown. Expect music, floats, and more. The parade starts at 37th Avenue and Union Street at 11am. Event website. FREE coffee and donuts from the local Chamber of Commerce.
Sunday, February 14, 2016
Chinatown Lunar New Year Parade: This is the biggie, sprawling through Chinatown and Little Italy with dancing in the streets and hundreds of thousands of wide-eyed onlookers. Parade begins at 1pm. Parade route: Mott & Canal to Chatham Square to East Broadway towards the Manhattan Bridge, completing on Eldridge and Forsyth Streets towards Grand Street next to Sara D. Roosevelt Park. More details on the Better Chinatown website.
Saturday, February 20, 2016
Lunar New Year Celebration at the Bronx Museum of the Arts: Traditional costumed folk dances and authentic music, presented by the New York Chinese Cultural Center. Special hands-on activities for kids include traditional techniques of paper cutting and calligraphy with hands-on art activities at 2:00pm, before the performances begin at 3:00pm. Free admission, but donations are welcome. Event website
Chinese New Year Celebration at Brooklyn Central Library: Grace Chang and her dragon, Jin Jin, light up the stage in this celebration with puppets, magical illusions, acrobats, mime and storytelling, at 1pm. Event website.
Lunar New Year Family Festival at the Museum of Chinese in America: Activities include workshops, musical performances, storytelling and craft-making, plus a performance of classic and contemporary work by the Red Silk Dancers. 11am to 4pm, at the museum in Chinatown.Free with museum admission. Please register to ensure space.
Sunday, February 28, 2016
Lantern Festival in Sunset Park: Cultural performances, martial arts, lion’s dancing, art & crafts, calligraphy, giveaways, free popcorn, cotton candy, more. 11:30 am to 3:30pm. Sunset Park is on Eighth Avenue, between 53rd and 55th St., in Brooklyn.