On Thursday, February 19, 2015, UNE celebrated the beginning of the Chinese Year of the Goat. According to the Chinese Zodiac, the Year of the Horse ended on February 18. Each year, the new year celebration is part of the Spring Festival in China, and this year UNE’s Professor An Shengxi from Beijing, China, brought this festival to Carolina, Puerto Rico, to share with UNE’s students, faculty, and staff.
Prof. An taught festival participants about the art of paper cut, which has historically been used in religious ceremonies in China. During the Spring Festival, many houses are decorated with paper cut hung on the windows and doors.
As another activity to learn about China, Prof. An also wrote examples of many Chinese characters. Students, faculty, and staff used paint to write their own characters meaning love, year, goat, good luck, and more, taking them home as souvenirs to remember the Chinese New Year.
One of the most popular activities at the festival was the chopstick challenge. Participants raced the clock (and each other) to move as many beans as possible from one plate to another, and afterward they received a small Chinese art prize for their efforts.
During lunchtime, everyone walking through the Main Hallway of UNE enjoyed the smells and tastes of Chinese food provided by the José A. (Tony) Santana International School of Hospitality and Culinary Arts.
Throughout the festival, the library provided a resource table with books and information about China and the Mandarin language.
The UNE community thanks Prof. An for sharing her culture with us! It was a fun and unforgettable experience!