Multicultural Tuscany: the Chinese New Year in Prato
Few days ago the Chinese community of Prato celebrated the New Lunar Year, the Year of the Horse. The celebration organized by the Buddhist Association of the Chinese Community in Italy consists in a parade with a big Dragon along the streets of Prato and "gourmet" stops along the walking to taste Chinese culinary delights. Along the streets you can see dances, listen to the music played by Chinese people mixed together with people from Prato and hear the noise of loud fireworks.
For the Chinese community (the one of Prato is the biggest in Europe) the New Year is the most important celebration of the traditional Chinese calendar, also known as the Spring Festival, a popular festival and joyful that marks the beginning of the new season which is celebrated on the second new moon after the winter solstice.
The celebrations lasted two days. On Saturday the parade covered the streets of Prato and on Sunday morning it started from the Buddhist Temple to Piazza San Domenico. The Dragon, after the blessing in the Temple, brings his best wishes for the New Year in the numerous stores and shops decorated with red ribbons and banners, offering their propitiatory gifts.
Here is a photo post with some shots of this event.
Photo by Luca Tempestini. See the set on Flickr.
Photo by Massimiliano Galardi. See the set on Flickr.