By Gou Wen
Lantern Festival, also called Yuanxiao Festival, is a traditional Chinese holiday.
There are many customs associated with the festival. Houses are festooned with colorful lanterns, often with riddles written on them; if the riddle is answered correctly, the solver earns a small gift.
Festival celebrations also include lion and dragon dances, and fireworks. Small glutinous rice balls filled with fruits and nuts, called yuanxiao or tangyuan, are eaten during the festival. The round shape of the balls symbolizes wholeness and unity within the family.
This year's Lantern Festival is on February 5. Many celebratory activities are already happening across Ningbo .
At Beilun District's Wanjingshan Park, the local dragon dance team put on a performance, drawing eager crowds. Many citizens were joyful to see the return of lively festivities.
Meanwhile, an event coordinated by school teachers and parents taught local children how to make their own lanterns, as well as the history and traditions behind the Festival. An adorable rabbit lantern was the centerpiece of the room's decoration, symbolizing the Year of the Rabbit.
"Today, I brought my granddaughter here to enjoy the festivities and traditional activities. I hope that my whole family will be joyful and healthy in the Year of the Rabbit," said Mrs. Zhang of Wanjingshan Community.
In Yinzhou District's Wangjia Community, citizens and subway construction workers prepared and enjoyed hand-made tangyuan and dumplings at a community gathering.
"This is my first time taking part in an event like this. In Ningbo, the tangyuan flavors are different from those in my hometown. It's heartwarming to enjoy a delicious, steaming bowl of tangyuan before the Lantern Festival!" said Mr. Zhang, a member of the rail transit construction team.
Chief Adviser: Zhao Qingchuan
Proofreader: Dong Na