Students Celebrate Lunar New Year!


Photo Provided by Hailey Chong

The Asian American Student Association poses in front of their Lunar New Year-inspired library display [Photographed by Hailey Chong]

Hazel Nguyen, Design Editor

On Jan. 22, many Freedom students and faculty celebrated Lunar New Year! Traditionally, those who celebrate do various fun activities with family and friends.

“I spent a lot of time with my extended family. We went to temples and then had a big family dinner with a lot of traditional food. Then, we played some games,” said junior Yenni Dang.

Traditional new year festivities have deep meanings of reverence and luck. Dang’s festivities of temples allow families to honor their ancestors, and eating an assortment of foods represents different manifestations for the new year. For example, steamed fish is a popular choice during celebrations, symbolizing prosperity and wealth. 

There are also many celebratory games, such as Bầu cua tôm cá, which translates to “gourd crab shrimp fish.” This is a game where there are three dice with six characters on each side. There is a board with these six characters where players place money on which ones they believe will show up on the dice. If players correctly guess their characters, they win all the money that was placed on that character. 

“I went to my grandma’s house and did ‘Jesah,’ which is a memorial ceremony for ancestors where we put food in a certain orientation and bow. Then we ate rice cake soup,” said junior Hailey Chong,  co-founder of the Asian American Student Association.

Chong also practices these types of traditions, showing that these traditions hold true across different Asian ethnicities, with Dang’s Vietnamese background and Chong’s Korean background. The Asian American Student Association also spread the spirit of celebration through decorating the library’s display and playing festive games during their meetings. 

After enjoying a vibrant and lighthearted holiday, Freedom students hope that 2023 brings them good luck and fortune!