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Chinese New Year 2010 | Honolulu Hawaii Chinatown

It's Chinese New Year and the Year of the Tiger in 2010.  Chinese New Year is one of the most important holidays for traditional Chinese.  All the festivities begin on during the first month and continue throughout the month until Chinese New Year's Day. This year is very special as Chinese New Year's day falls on February 14, 2010 which is also Valentine's Day and making it an especially auspicious day to celebrate in the West.

In Honolulu, Hawaii our downtown Chinatown has been celebrating with their festivities over the last couple of weekends. We finally got down to the Chinese Cultural Plaza yesterday to enjoy some of the food, festivities and vendors.  In most states and countries it is celebrated where a sizable Chinese population lives. 

The Chinese Dragon Dancers were getting ready to put on their show so we went to get a snack. We munched on spring rolls and charbroiled chicken on a stick and then went to the vending booths. As you can see, it is such a colorful celebration!

The Chinese Dragon signifies courage, righteousness and dignity. The Chinese Dragon Dance signifies the end of a the year and welcoming a new start while driving away evil spirits, bringing good luck and fortune to people. 

 As history explains:  The firecrackers, red lanterns and clothing were to ward away the mythical beast called Nien. On the first day of the New Year the Nien would come and devour livestock, crops and especially little children. Oh, the galore of red lanterns and decorations for one's door frame and many jade trinkets with different meanings to hang around your home for protection that are available. Some may start the New Year "fresh" by giving their home a fresh coat of red paint, getting a haircut, buying new clothes and shoes which further symbolizes a fresh start.

 This was just one day out of many that we were fortunate to find the time to enjoy. I got what I went for...a renewed outlook for 2010 with the history of traditional Chinese New Year. I did end up purchasing my little jade trinkets for health, strength, prosperity and more.




Click on the following link for more info on>>>Schedule of Events for the Chinese New Year Celebration in Honolulu Hawaii  

Friday and Saturday, January 22 & 23 and January 29 & 30
United Chinese Coalition presents Chinese New Year Festival

Chinatown Cultural Plaza.  At this four-day event, food vendors
provide a variety of Chinese and other Asian cuisine favorites

Saturday, January 30, 5:00 - 10:00 pm

Hilton Hawaiian Village.  At the Coronation Ball, the new Narcissus Queen is officially crowned with much pomp and grandeur as the Chinese Chamber celebrates the 61th Anniversary of the Narcissus Festival 

Friday, February 5, 6:00 - 10:00 pm
61th Annual Narcissus Festival and Choy Cheng, Traditional Lion Dance Blessing, and Chinatown Open House

In Chinatown and at Chinatown Cultural Plaza.  The evening begins at 8 South King St. with the traditional Chinese lion dance blessing -- Choy Cheng.  The Narcissus Queen and her court will visit Chinatown businesses and their patrons..
Saturday, February 6, 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Chinatown Open House
  Chinatown Cultural Plaza. Food vendors provide an assortment of Chinese ethnic favorites, including jai (vegetarian monk's food), gin doi (Chinese doughnut), gau (New Year pudding), and jook (rice soup). Entertainment includes ethnic dance troupes, local musical groups, and martial arts and weapons demonstrations.
Saturday, February 6, 3:30- 5:30 pm
The "Night In Chinatown" Parade begins at 3:30 p.m. on Hotel Street at the
State Capitol and proceeds to Maunakea Street.  Parade participants include Festival Queens and their courts, cultural organizations, kung fu martial artists, lion and dragon dance associations, including a special performance by a
150 foot dragon.  .
Saturday, February 6, 9:00 am - 10:30 pm
Night in Chinatown Festival
On Maunakea Street and Smith Street.  This all-day block party features booths with home-cooked Asian food and traditional New Year's arts and crafts, as well as, entertainment on two stages with martial arts, cultural demonstrations, and Chinese lion and dragon dance performance



Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman is a Realtor-Associate with Century 21 Liberty Homes in Mililani, Hawaii. With a sharp understanding that a listening ear is the key to a client's needs, she serves the island of Oahu (Honolulu County) and all Hawaii Military Relocating to Hawaii, Hawaii Retirees, Hawaii Job Transfers and Hawaii Residents.

Website: www.hawaiihomesmarket.com



Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman  is a Realtor-Associate® and Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) with Century 21 Liberty Homes in Mililani, Hawaii. With a sharp understanding that a listening ear is the key to a client's needs  she serves the island of Oahu (Honolulu County) and all Hawaii Military Relocations, Hawaii Retirees, Hawaii Job Transfers and Hawaii Residents, Home Buyers and Sellers.


 © 2007-2015 Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman's

Hawaii Real Estate and Relocation Blog.

All rights reserved.





Comment balloon 48 commentsCeleste "SALLY" Cheeseman • January 24 2010 01:47PM


Sally - thanks for the history lesson and the great photos. Happy Chinese New Year!!


Posted by Jeff Dowler, The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad (Solutions Real Estate ) almost 8 years ago

Hopefully your narcissus is blooming today.  Gung Hay Fat Choi!

Posted by Sun City Grand Homes Surprise AZ Real Estate Leolinda Bowers Designated Broker Leolinda Realty, Sun City Grand in Surprise Arizona (Leolinda Realty) almost 8 years ago

Sally, The celebration looks wonderful, we are expecting a huge one too.  It's just so cold here...and that's what keeps me away :(  I have some of those 'trinkets' myself scattered around my home including one very precious turtle that has brought me very good luck!!  :)

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) almost 8 years ago

Sally.  Wonderful local post and I'm sure folks who search for info on the celebrations will get this.


Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) almost 8 years ago

great photos, thanks for sharing with us! Chinese celebration shall start soon!

Posted by Eileen Hsu, LICENSED REAL ESTATE SALESPERSON (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) almost 8 years ago

Sally - Exquisite localism blog and history lesson coupled with great local photos.

Posted by Petra Norris, Realtor, Lakeland FL Homes for Sale (CDV TransAtlantic, Inc.) almost 8 years ago

Great post and pictures.  I need to find out if KC has a Chinatown, I dont think they do.

Posted by Trisha P Realty Group, "Holding the Keys to Your Dream Home" (Realty Executives) almost 8 years ago

Sally, all that and great weather too.  What's not to love? 

Happy Chinese New Year!

Posted by Maggie Dokic | Miami, FL | 305.81.HOUSE (46873), GREEN, CDPE, SFR, Pinecrest | Palmetto Bay | (eXp Realty LLC) almost 8 years ago

I was just in Vegas and met John Novak at the Bellagio Chinese New Year exhibit.  These are great photos, Sally.  I have never been to see a New Year parade and we have a pretty decent Chinatown here. 

Posted by Jane Peters, Connecting you to the L.A. real estate market (Home Jane Realty) almost 8 years ago

Jeff: Just wait until you come back...we'll be taking you and your lovely wife around!

Leolinda: I've been looking all over and come to find out there is so many ways (and styles)

Found these:  The most common Chinese ways of saying Happy New Year are Gong Xi Fa Cai (Mandarin) and Gong Hey Fat Choy (Cantonese). Even though the pronunciations are a little different, both are written the same way. 

the kung hei fat choy is mostly for 'americans'...or so they say.



Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Century 21 Liberty Homes) almost 8 years ago

Carole: I bet yours will be big....we have a bunch of stuff going on...as usual the food was the best....the vendors and dance came in a close second :)

Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Century 21 Liberty Homes) almost 8 years ago

Fantastic post, Sally! Congrats on your FEATURE! Terrific photos, too :)


Posted by Debi Boucher, "Realtor Showcase" - Real Estate Photography/Virtual Tours ( Real Estate Showcase Photography) almost 8 years ago

Sally- First, thank you for reminding me when Chinese New Year's is.  When I was younger I remember my family taking all of us to Chinatown in Houston to watch the festivities.  However, no one ever really explained the history behind everything.  Thank you for the pics and the history lesson.

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) almost 8 years ago

Sally, I think that I'll have to throw a Chinese New Year party, since I missed my Christmas party while in Hawaii!  Great photos.

Posted by Patricia Kennedy, For Your Home in the Capital (Evers & Company Real Estate, Inc.) almost 8 years ago

What an interesting celebration to be a part of!  Love the colorful pictures.  I bet the music and food was amazing also.  I have never been to Hawaii and did not even think about there being a Chinatown.  Hopefully I will make it someday!

Posted by Debbie Hutchins almost 8 years ago

Sally I have never been to a Chinese New Year Celebration, but it is one of the things that I would love to do someday.

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages) almost 8 years ago

Looks like this would be a really great celebration to see and attend. I have never been to one though.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) almost 8 years ago

Sally love the history.  We've been invited to celebrate a Chinese New Year in Feb at a clients new home.....auspcious day for sure!  Love the pics!

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten CRS,CRB, Arizona's Top Banana of Real Estate! (Phoenix Property Shoppe) almost 8 years ago


 I have never experienced one of those celebrations... I have seen them in many movies, but never actually saw one.  Thank you for the share and tidbits of info.

Posted by Paul Guenther, Empire West Title- Chandler, AZ (Empire West Title Agency) almost 8 years ago

Great history, great pictures, great post,,,sounds like it would be a fun event to attend

Posted by Michael Eisenberg, Bellingham Real Estate Guy (eXp Realty) almost 8 years ago


Thank you so much for bringing back memories of my childhood! I spent my first four years in Honolulu (actually in Manoa Valley) and I had a nanny from British Hong Kong. Even though I'm a haole I was taken in as part of this wonderful Chinese extended family, and have many happy memories of eating duck's feet and lots of saimen. The strongest memories of New Years are from the firecrackers! They frightened our dogs terribly! The smell of the powder would linger, and for weeks you would still find little bits of red paper on the streets.

Living in the Bay Area now, I need to make sure to get either to the Oakland or SF Chinatown during these next few weeks and enjoy some of these wonderful and colorful traditions. Mahalo for a great post, and especially good photos!


Posted by Arlene Baxter, Listing/Buying agent, Historic to Green, 2012 REALTOR of the Year, Berkeley Association Berkeley CA & environs (Red Oak Realty) almost 8 years ago

Happy New Year....what lovely pictures!! I spent tonight booking a flight to Beijing for my son. Pepperdine Law School has an abroad to China this summer...wish I'd realized it was the New Year, quite ironic.

Posted by Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner, Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395 (Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395) almost 8 years ago

This is so cool! I had no idea you had a whole Chinatown, including parades and all the culture. Very interesting data about the red lanterns and jade too. I never knew that. I love these informative Localism posts!

Posted by Lisa Hill, Daytona Beach Real Estate (Florida Property Experts) almost 8 years ago

I absolutely love the Chinatown celebrations for new year -- favorite one is in San Francisco! 

Posted by Aaron Vaughn | Builder | Investor, If the deal makes sense, the cash will follow. (Conifer Homes) almost 8 years ago


Good post on Chinese new year. I noticed there was no snow on the ground in the pictures. Ha.

Posted by Terry Chenier (Homelife Glenayre Realty) almost 8 years ago

Wow, what a post.  We have big Chinese New Year here in San Francisco too.  Our Coldwell Banker office has had a tradition of going to a Chinese restaurant to celebrate.  I think we have about 200 agents attend.  Big event like a said.

Posted by Frank Castaldini, Realtor - Homes for Sale in San Francisco (Coldwell Banker ) almost 8 years ago

Sally, great post - photos and history. I wish there was a Chinatown in SE Florida. I'll keep looking. I grew up in San Jose, CA near San Francisco's Chinatown I do miss the food and the city. Gong Hey Fat Choy!!!

Posted by Eva Aliaga, Boca Raton & Delray Beach: SE Florida Real Estate (Keller Williams Realty Boca Raton IdealFloridaLiving.com) almost 8 years ago

I think it is very ironic with all that is going on and will continue this year with Tiger Woods that this is the Year of the Tiger...We shall see how it all turns out.

Posted by Alan Brown, 26 Years of Real Estate Experience . (Coldwell Banker Montrose Colorado) almost 8 years ago

Alan: Nothing to do with Tiger Woods...this is a centuries old celebration:)

Ewa: Happy Chinese New Year!

Frank: Have fun!

Terry: Yeah...but right now we're getting hit by the vog from the Big Island. (the volcanic smog that blew over here)

Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Century 21 Liberty Homes) almost 8 years ago

Happy New Year! Great post and thank you for all the pictures! This blog has brought back many childhood memories...  Good times!

Posted by Pierre Chan almost 8 years ago

Happy New Year! Great post and thank you for all the pictures! This blog has brought back many childhood memories...  Good times!

Posted by Pierre Chan (Dexter Credit Union) almost 8 years ago

Nice local post, Sally, and good information. I think this is the year I should take in the big Chinese New Year's parade in San Francisco. Happy New Year.

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Serving San Mateo County and San Francisco (Today | Sotheby's International Realty) almost 8 years ago

Nice post!    Year of the Tiger...hmmm....should be interesting, right??

Posted by Li Read, Caring expertise...knowledge for you! (Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring)) almost 8 years ago

Hello Celeste,

HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR 2010 to you too!... As a Feng Shui "aficionada" it is grand to see your posting, full of hope and good cheer!.... great photos!... Do you think my live gold fish will do?

All the best,

Isabel, Waters Real Estate (Fort Lauderdale,FL) 

Posted by Isabel Waters almost 8 years ago


Thanks for another interesting post on life in Honolulu. I love the rich cultural heritage mix in the Islands and miss it when I'm on the mainland.  Mahalo for sharing!

Posted by Marcy Eastham (Town & Country Realty Corvallis Oregon) almost 8 years ago

I love seeing the Chinese New Year, what a event I wish it was on tv more.

Posted by Delaware Junk Removal Residential And Commercial Hauling Clean Outs, Whole House Clean Outs, Basements, Garages, Attics (Delaware Junk Removal 302-530-9186) almost 8 years ago

Sally - thanks for sharing! What wonderful traditions!!! February 14 is Ron's birthday too, so I think I will have to throw a surprise birthday party for him - and bring him much good luck by having it on the Chinese New Year's Day!!!! Thanks for the idea!!!

Posted by Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor (Charles Rutenberg Realty) almost 8 years ago

Being within walking distance of downtown Honolulu is great during the Chinese New Year celebration


Thanks for the pictures






Posted by Sensei J. Richard Kirkham B.Sc. almost 8 years ago

wow, great localism post! The costumes are fantastic! You really make me want to pack a bag and jump on a flight! So, 6 weeks of fun cultural activities, food and celebration..Now thats a party!
Thanks for sharing such interesting tradition with us!

Posted by Michele Connors, Your Eastern North Carolina Realtor (The Overton Group, LLC Pitt & Carteret County) almost 8 years ago

Thanks to you all for your sharing the festivities with me :) Happy Chinese New Year...find one around you!

Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Century 21 Liberty Homes) almost 8 years ago

Sally, great history lesson and localism.  The first I can remember hearing "Gong Hey Fat Choy" I was in junior high...I don't think I ever spelled it right...didn't know about the three way of saying it...love learning how to say things in other languages...I think I can say, thank you, in 20 different languages...not sure if I can spell them, but the way another face lights up when I thank them in their own language says...they don't care how I spell it.

I know how to say thank you in Chinese...do you know if there is more than one way to say it?

Posted by Nick T Pappas, Madison & Huntsville Alabama Real Estate Resource (Assoc. Broker/Broker ABR, CRS, SFR, e-Pro, @Homes Realty Group, Huntsville AL) almost 8 years ago
Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods (www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) almost 8 years ago

Great Localism post. Your photos and history of the Chinese New Year really make me wish we could be there to join in the celebration and pick up some of those little jade trinkets.

Posted by Lee & Carol Barbour, REALTORS, Mountain Living Team in Murphy NC and North GA (Murphy and Hayesville, NC; Hiawassee, Blairsville, Blue Ridge GA and Copperhill TN) almost 8 years ago

Celeste, I don't think I've ever lived anywhere where Chinese New Year traditions were observed in a larger scale so I really appreciate your post and insight.  I love those jade figurines and hope they will bring you good luck in 2010.  Happy Chinese New Year!

Posted by Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES, Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living (Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch!) almost 8 years ago

Great artical.  I just love it when people post these thing.  It helps to educate more people about the Chinese culture.  I have just 1 correction to make.  What you have pictured is a Chinese Southern Lion.  It is not a dragon.  There is an easy way to tell the differance.  Lions have 4 legs, just like the real ones.  Dragons are mystical creatures and therefore can have more. 

Posted by Welton Wong almost 8 years ago

Mr. Wong: Thank you so much for the clarification....I ...as many others often confuse the two. Like you said...dragons may have more legs for the dance.  I have a dragon on my hutch and it has two hind and two front....but long tail. Thanks again!

Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Century 21 Liberty Homes) almost 8 years ago

Sally - This is such a great blog and I love all the pictures.

Posted by Michelle Gibson, REALTOR (Hansen Real Estate Group Inc. ) almost 8 years ago

please i missed you

Posted by michael sears almost 8 years ago

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