Flame is ready for Chinese New Year, are you?

This year the Chinese New Year is the year of the pig so with Wiglet the pig as our mascot, acknowledging the Chinese New Year is definitely a reason for celebration!

With less than a week to go before we celebrate the Chinese New Year I decided to find out a little bit about it as learning is fun, whatever your age!

The origins of the Chinese New Year start way back. One ancient Chinese legend is that thousands of years ago a terrifying monster called Nian (which means year) would emerge from the sea at the beginning of each year and scare all the villagers.   The villagers were all petrified of this monster so that would all run and hide in the mountains to get away from him.

The villagers discovered that the monster was afraid of bright lights, loud noises and the colour red so they realised they could use these things to scare the monster away.   Nowadays people in China and those who choose to celebrate the Chinese New Year use lanterns, firecrackers and fireworks plus red decorations and clothes.

The Chinese New Year is sometimes referred to as the Lunar New Year because the date varies each year according to the phases of the moon.  People in China enjoy seven consecutive days off work during the Chinese New Year and have named this week of relaxation Spring Festival.  Children are given money in decorated red envelopes and the whole event is about good luck and prosperity.

So on the weekend of 2nd and 3rd February, we will be saying Gung Hey Fat Choy and celebrating the Chinese New Year.  Gung Hey Fat Choy actually means ‘happiness and prosperity’ and is the perfect wish to have for each other don’t you think?

So for the 2nd and 3rd February we have so much in store for you!

Flame, our friendly farm dragon will be around the farm hoping to greet as many of you as possible, perhaps you could say hello to him or have a go at saying Nǐ hǎo   to him if you’re feeling brave, which means hello.  You can pronounce it ‘nee how’ or ‘nay ho.’

In the Playbarn we will have an awesome interactive show with Flame himself and top tips for training your dragon!  (Just in case you are a little bit out of practice.)

We will also have crafts – your young ones can make their own dragon puppets and fortune tellers – going on for most of the day.   In addition we will have tickle a pig in Animal Holding (I bet you’ve never done that before!)  We will also have delicious Chinese food in our Tea Room all weekend!

It is going to be a weekend to remember so we hope to see you there!