The Year of the Rabbit officially begins on Sunday, January 22, during the Lunar New Year or Chinese New Year 2023 (also referred to as Spring Festival in China). The 15-day Lunar New Year festival brings together family and communities for many Asian Canadians with roots in China, South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Mongolia, and other Asian countries (from the new moon to the full moon).
At the start of each year, people of many cultures look forward to the new Chinese zodiac designation and its meanings. The Chinese zodiac specifies one of 12 animals in the 12-month lunar calendar. Each animal’s or sign’s characteristics are attributed to the new year and the people born under that sign. Complementary elements, such as this year’s water, also affect the zodiac predictions.
2023 is the Year of the Rabbit, or more specifically, the Year of the Water Rabbit, according to the Chinese Zodiac. The rabbit is seen as a compassionate animal that deliberates before acting and is thought to be the luckiest of the 12 animals to be born under. The energy of the Year of the Rabbit is tranquil and gentle. The water element advises relying on intuition and your inner guidance. Together, the Water Rabbit represents putting connections first, employing tact, and creating links between personal and professional ties. According to one Chinese horoscope, those who were born in the 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, and 2023 birth years should experience luck, patience, and prosperity in 2023.
Parades and other festivities are held in Toronto and Vancouver to celebrate the Chinese or Lunar New Year. During the holiday weeks, many restaurants offer special menus, or if you want to ring in the new year in your dining room, you can order dinners in advance to be delivered to your house. Check your local community calendars, wherever you are in Canada, to see if there are any Lunar New Year or Spring Festival events taking place close to you.
Chinese restaurants in Toronto provide special menus for the Lunar New Year that feature dishes like Prosperity Lobster and spring rolls, which stand for wealth. Or go to the Bentway Skate Trail with pals and lace up your skates. Both Chinatown Centre and Dragon City Mall are hosting additional Lunar New Year events.
Returning this year with floats, marching bands, and costumes is the Vancouver Chinese New Year Parade! Want to ring in the new year with the kids on a more intimate scale? On January 17, the Kensington branch of the Vancouver Public Library will present a Lunar New Year puppet show and other events.