Feedback on the Chinese New Year Dinner — Sam Harbinson (LXX)

Happy Lunar New Year everyone,

This year Rugby School hosted the first ever whole school Chinese New Year dinner celebration, celebrating the year of the tiger! The Chinese New Year/Lunar/Spring Festival is about uniting with friends and family and sharing blessings, commonly used with the phrase 恭喜发财 (gōng xǐ fā cái) literally meaning best wishes attaining greater wealth. The celebration is highly important in Chinese culture, and it is responsible for the largest migration of people to China each year, no matter how far the Chinese people were away they would try to endure that they could get home for New Years Eve. Unfortunately, due to COVID restrictions and school many pupils were and still are unable to get home, so due to this Mrs. Zhang, Mr. Brown, the EDI Levee, and many others came together to create a proper traditional Chinese New Year Celebration. Thus, allowing the students who have not been able to go back to China due to the restrictions imposed by COVID to celebrate their culture, along with providing a way for foreign students such as myself to be able to witness and appreciate the different cultural celebrations and traditions. I have spoken with some of the people who have not been able to go back to China in years due to COVID and asked about how they felt when Mrs. Zhang announced that the school was going to have a Chinese New Year celebration dinner. They were absolutely elated being able to reunite with their culture that they had not formally celebrated for so long. Now, as far as the actual celebration itself? It was incredible, I myself have had formal celebrations with extended family, but never anything at this scale. The performances were all exceptional and kept everyone thoroughly entertained throughout the evening, especially considering they only had a week or two of practice for the event and they all deserve a massive round of applause. The food was incredible, after speaking with many Chinese and foreign people about the food, they all said that it was great! However, the only complaints I heard was that there was not a lot of variety and that there wasn’t a lot of it.

I would like to say a special thank you to Mrs. Zhang who worked exceptionally hard on setting up the event and making it into the massive success that it turned out to be. 谢谢老师!

Happy Chinese New Year, 拜年!

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