History will come to life in Weaverville when a virtual Chinese New Year celebration and lion dance are performed from Weaverville Joss House State Historic Park.
This virtual event is offered on the parks online resources for teachers and students, or PORTS, home learning program as well as on the park’s Facebook page. The virtual celebration will be broadcast on the first day of the Chinese New Year, starting at 10 a.m. on Friday, February 12, from the oldest continuously used Chinese Taoist temple in California, known as the Cloud Forest Temple.
The celebration will be featured in three separate online programs. The virtual event is presented at K-12 levels in collaboration with the department’s PORTS school programming platform.
To view this event, you can register as a participant at www.ports-ca.us to receive a link or join by visiting the park’s Facebook page. The event will be broadcast on State Parks’ main Facebook page.
10:00 am – Traditions in the Cloud Forest Temple
Jack Frost, California State Park Historic Landmark Guide, will welcome you to the temple to introduce you to Chinese New Year traditions. The special significance of incense, food offerings, money, and revered ancestors will be shared.
11 a.m. – Lion dance and lantern crafts
We start with the colorful lion dance presented virtually by lion dance group, Eastern Ways. A lion dance is one of China’s oldest cultural performing arts. The Chinese believe that “the lion will preserve peace and quiet in the community and prevail over all evil to bring joy and happiness in the new year.” Several Chinese-born guests will share their memories of their start to the New Year. Then there will be a demonstration of traditional red lantern making and discussion of the years of the Chinese zodiac.
1:00 p.m. – Heartbeat & Firecracker Temple
Viewers will share a special sacred moment in the Cloud Forest Temple and the temple’s unique heartbeat will sound on the gong and drum. The final of the event will ignite powerful Chinese firecrackers to scare away evil spirits.