Where to Embrace Your Inner Dragon

It’s Day Four of Chinese New Year and I still keep writing 4709 on all of my checks.

Oh, I kill me.

Four down, 11 to go.

Lunar New Year 4710 celebrations get bigger and better as the days progress. If you haven’t had the chance to immerse yourself in the pomp and pageantry of the Year of the Dragon, check out these travel hot spots where the 15-day celebration is in full swing:

CHICAGO

On Sunday, January 29th get up-close and personal with dancing lions, elaborate floats and a myriad of marching bands at the annual Chinatown New Year’s Parade. The free festivities kick-off at 1 p.m. with the parade that begins on Wentworth Avenue and travels to Cermak Road.

NEW YORK CITY

NYC is home to one of the largest Chinatowns in the United States. As such, Lunar New Year celebrations are spectacular… and loud. Think tens of thousands of crackling fireworks, hundreds of thousands of festival-goers and a massive parade that gets underway at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, January 29th. The parade winds through Chinatown along Mott, Canal, and Bayard streets, and along East Broadway. Expect eye-popping floats, dancing lions and dragons, live musicians, acrobats and a bevy of martial artists.

SAN FRANCISCO

The San Francisco Zoo is commemorating the Lunar New Year with a plethora of cultural events. On Sunday, January 29th the zoo will be hosting Chinese acrobats, as well as traditional lion and folk dancers. In addition, kids can learn Chinese yo-yo tricks and take zodiac tours which lead to animals found on the Chinese calendar. Children and their parents can even meet a dragon—-a bearded dragon from the lizard family. Also, in honor of the Year of the Dragon, admission to the zoo is free for all those born in the years 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000 and 2012.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.

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