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Happy Lunar New Year! The new year, celebrated across many Asian populations, began on Feb. 5, but there are still plenty of events around town over the next few weeks.

Area schools are hosting a free Chinese New Year Celebration on Saturday, Feb. 9, at Madison Memorial High School, 201 S. Gammon Road, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Middleton High School, Madison Memorial High School, Sun Prairie High School, Waunakee High School and Verona Area International School are all participating in the event, which will feature an opening ceremony, crafts, a cake walk, student performances and vendors selling Chinese food.

The UW-Madison Malaysian Students Association is throwing a free “Chinese New Year Celebration x Spring 2019 Kick Off” this Saturday, Feb. 9, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Drive. There will be Chinese food and performances by individuals and groups like LANSe Dance, a traditional Chinese dance team.

Leykashree, president of the association, said the event is not only a great time to learn more about Malaysian culture, but as a kick-off event, it’s a great time to learn what the association offers throughout the year.

The group is trying to reach more people outside the Malaysian community, so come for “great food, great people,” she said. “We’re super friendly."

The Wisconsin Tibetan Association will host a Tibetan New Year dinner with traditional Tibetan food this Saturday, Feb. 9, at 6 p.m. at at Madison Turners, 3001 S. Stoughton Road. The new year is a time to wish prosperity, good health and luck to all, said Lobsang Tenzing, president of the WTA.

The UW-Madison Chinese American Student Association, along with several other student organizations and performance groups, is hosting a free Chinese New Year Celebration next Saturday, Feb. 16, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Gordon Dining and Event Center, 770 W. Dayton St. The event features free food like orange spare ribs, Chinese noodles and fried spring rolls. There will also be presentations by CHASA, the Hong Kong Student Association and the Taiwan Undergraduate Student Organization on the history, food and culture of Chinese New Year. The Asian Musical Instruments Community, LANSe Dance group, and Zhong Yi Kung Fu Association will perform at the event.

There will be a lion dance, a traditional Chinese New Year performance to represent good luck and fortune where dancers wear costumes, said Deborah Liu, co-president of CHASA.

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“I think it’s really cool to see people from different countries, China, Taiwan, come together to celebrate this one event,” Liu said.

Liu said that at last year’s celebration, “the coolest thing was seeing people from the public come,” and express interest in their culture.

The UW-Madison Vietnamese Student Association is celebrating Lunar New Year, known as Tet Holiday in Vietnam, on Sunday, Feb. 17, from noon to 4 p.m. at the Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St. There will be food, performances, games and prizes and a fashion show at the end of the free event.

Matcha Tea Company is hosting “Chinese & Lunar New Year Brunch” this Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 9 and 10, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The menu includes miso soup, Dan Dan pork sausage, and a tofu and mushroom dish. 

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