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Chinese New Year comes to Docklands

29 Jan 2019

Chinese New Year comes to Docklands Image

By Jessica Carrascalao Heard

Docklands is set to bring in the Year of the Pig with a bang, with events planned from the Melbourne Star to Victoria Promenade for the Chinese New Year Festival Melbourne 2019.

The District Docklands has partnered with Chinese New Year United, and will host a weekend of family-friendly activities to ring in the new year.

From February 8 to 10, there will be a lion dance blessing, cultural craft activities and a fireworks display at The District, as well as fortune cookie giveaways “with something special” from selected stores.

There will also be cultural performances and craft activities at the Melbourne Star, and two lion dances on ice at the O’Brien Group Arena.

Chinese New Year United chair Thomas Ling said this year’s festival would be “our biggest celebration yet”.

“We want to make every year bigger … we try to be more unique and more creative and bring up more, other aspects of the Chinese New Year heritage,” he said.

February 16 and 17 will see Chinese New Year Festival Melbourne’s first ever Dragon Boat regatta kicking off at Victoria Promenade.

Mr Ling said he was excited about incorporating dragon boating into this year’s festival.

The regatta will be a two-day event, with social races on February 16, and dragon boat club races on February 17.

“We hope to build this into an international racing event in 2020,” he said.

Dragon Boat Victoria’s business manager - finance and communications, Jonathan Low, said the organisation had been thinking to bring Chinese culture back to dragon boating.

“This is a good opportunity to attract people to Docklands, to get involved in the festivals, to watch the cultural performances, and lion dances as well,” he said.

The regatta will run from 9am to 5pm each day.

The Chinese New Year Festival Melbourne 2019 is set to stretch all over the inner city, from Docklands, Southbank, Melbourne CBD and up to Melbourne Museum.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp, who will officially unveil the festival on February 2, said the festival was one of Melbourne’s favourite events.

“The Chinese New Year Festival Melbourne 2019 unites families and friends to celebrate Chinese culture and traditions across the city,” she said.

The festival will officially open on February 2 at Queensbridge Square, and will run until February 17.

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