11 Lunar New Year celebrations for Chicago families

Lunar New Year, commonly known as Chinese New Year, will be celebrated in many countries throughout Asia (and here in the U.S.) on Jan. 25, 2020. Chicago’s Chinatown is one of the largest in North America. Here are some of the Lunar New Year celebrations taking place there and all around in Chicago to usher in the Year of the Rat.


Chinese New Year Kickoff Celebration


When: Jan. 24


Where: Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington St., Chicago


Enjoy a free, multi-arts lunch hour performance featuring the Chicago Chinese Cultural Center lion dancers, martial arts, an award winning solo dance by Hao Dance’s Angela Wan, music by Chicago’s own Tuvergen Band performing on a trio of Mongolian and Chinese instruments and the Silk Road Ensemble pipa master Yang Wei. This event will also feature special guest artists direct from China – the Zhejiang Shaoju Opera Theater.


Chinese New Year Celebration


When: Jan. 24


Where: Hawthorn Mall, 122 Hawthorn Center, Vernon Hills


Hawthorn Mall welcomes the Year of the Rat with a fun-filled Chinese New Year celebration. Throughout the event, there will be traditional Lion Dance and extreme yo-yo performances by the Chicago North Chinese School, an educational demonstration about Lunar New Year presented by China native Yvonne Wolf from Chinese Intercultural LLC, food samples from Hawthorn Mall’s Chinese restaurants, and a special lantern-making kids craft. The event will be held in Macy’s Court on the Lower Level.


Lunar New Year Celebration – North Suburbs


When: Jan. 25


Where: Fashion Outlets of Chicago 5220 Fashion Outlets Way, Rosemont


Fashion Outlets of Chicago’s shoppers can enjoy a Chinese Lunar New Year event with a variety of festive games, activities and cultural performances including Xilin Dance Company, Huaxing Children Choir and more.


Global Connections: Chinese New Year


When: Jan. 25


Where: Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand Ave., Chicago


Head to the Aon Grand Ballroom for an afternoon celebration of Chinese New Year, featuring live dance, music, and other performances, plus traditional food, crafts and more.


Lunar New Year Program


When: Jan. 25


Where: Korean Cultural Center, 9930 S. Capitol Dr., Wheeling


Learn about the Korean Lunar New Year with traditional performances, Sul activities and food and an information session.


Lunar New Year Celebration


When: Feb. 1


Where: 520 N. Michigan Avenue, Chicago


The Shops at North Bridge shoppers can also enjoy a special Lunar New Year kickoff event. A variety of games and activities will be offered at booths throughout Level One of the shopping center, including lantern crafting, Chinese calligraphy, a photo booth and more, alongside cultural performances presented by the Huaxing Arts Troupe.


Argyle Lunar New Year Parade


When: Feb. 1


Where: Argyle Parade, Argyle & Winthrop, Chicago


The parade will kick-off at Argyle & Winthrop and will head east along Argyle St., south along Sheridan Rd., west along Ainslie St., and north along Broadway to Argyle St. The Latin School will have art workshops and family-friendly fun to coincide with the parade and the Bezazian Branch of the library will host a Year of the Rat storytime with crafts.


Lunar New Year Parade


When: Feb. 2


Where: Chinatown, Wentworth Avenue and Cermak Road, Chicago


The parade kicks off at 24th Street and Wentworth Avenue and heads north up Wentworth to Cermak Road. The parade features marching bands, colorful floats, traditional lion dances and a special appearance by Ronald McDonald.


Lunar New Year Celebration at the Art Institute of Chicago


When: Feb. 8


Where: Art Institute of Chicago, 159 E. Monroe, Chicago


Celebrate the Lunar New Year with art-making activities, games, performances, an artist demonstration, and gallery talks in English and Mandarin.


Lunar New Year with Yin He Dance


When: Feb. 9


Where: Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St., Chicago


Celebrate the lunar new year at this all-ages family program featuring dances from China’s different regions and ethnic enclaves. Learn and play through performances, cultural lessons, and hands-on activities for both young and young-at-heart.


Chinese New Year Celebration


When: Feb. 9


Where: Chinese-American Museum of Chicago, 238 W. 23rd St., Chicago


Join the Chinese American Museum of Chicago in welcoming and celebrating the Year of the Rat at the Annual Chinese New Year Celebration. The festive event will feature Chinese music, Chinese food, arts and crafts, and more.


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This story originally published Jan. 23, 2019 on ChicagoParent.com and has been updated with the most recent information.


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