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Fire-Breathing New Year 

Wednesday, Feb 1 2012
San Francisco’s Chinese New Year celebration is the largest of its kind outside Asia. Rooted in the 1860s, this 15-day festival began as a means of educating the community about Chinese culture. This year’s celebration, under the auspices of the city’s first Chinese-American mayor, Ed Lee, has already witnessed the crowning of a new Miss Chinatown, a basketball jamboree, and a flower fair. This weekend, more than 100 organizations gather to participate in the popular Chinese New Year Street Fair and Parade. Local vendors showcase family-friendly cultural arts, such as lantern- and kite-making, calligraphy, folk dancing, and puppetry. The fair culminates in an illuminated parade that proceeds on Market, Geary, Powell, Post, and Kearny. It includes floats, marching bands, martial arts groups, stilt-walkers, acrobats -- and about 600,000 firecrackers. The Year of the Water Dragon signifies luck and prosperity, which San Francisco celebrates with a 200-foot golden dragon grand finale powered by more than 100 men and women. If 2012 is to be a success, we’re glad that dragon is on our side.
Sat., Feb. 11, 10 a.m., 2012

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Jessica Hilo

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