Blackface in Chinese New Year sketch blasted online for cultural insensitivity

Chinatown school welcomes Chinese New Year

A look at past Chinese New Year celebrations in Cleveland (vintage photos)

The Lunar New Year is a holiday celebrated at the beginning of the Chinese lunisolar calendar and is observed by many Asian countries, including China, Korea, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore.

Chinese around the world celebrated the arrival of the Year of the Dog on Friday with family reunions, firecrackers and traditional food.

February 16 begins the year of the Earth Dog, and in recognition of the new year, the city's Animal Services Department joined the event with canines from local shelters available for adoption.

"I am honored today to join my city colleagues in celebrating the Lunar New Year", said Councilman David Ryu. Last year was known as the year of the Rooster.

Unlike the Roman calendar, the lunar new year changes, although it usually falls between January 21 and February 20. It's also common for families to clean their homes together, to make sure they're sweeping away any bad fortune at the start of the new year. The Chinese Zodiac moves in twelve year cycles, and the animal sign you're born under says a lot about your personality, according to Chinese astrology.

How long does the Lunar New Year last? .

A performer takes part in a night parade to celebrate Chinese New Year in Hong Kong. The bustling atmosphere provides a conduit through which brands can appeal to the fastest-growing demographic in the United States, according to the Pew Research Center (the Chinese population represents the largest single origin group in the Asian-American population).

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