FREE Chinese Lunar New Year Events in Chicago

Check out all  the free events in Chicago to celebrate the year of the Rooster for the Chinese Lunar New Year. With one of the largest Chinatowns in North America, Chicago is the proud home to a vibrant Chinese community that celebrates its rich cultural traditions with gusto. Holidays are particularly festive and Chinese New Year is undoubtedly one of the biggest. Join in the citywide celebration as cultural performances, parades, special events and retail offers mark the holiday from January 28 – February 12 — the Year of the Rooster! See the schedule below for all the Spring Festival events planned across Chicago.



Parades and celebrations


Chinatown Lunar New Year Parade Come out and enjoy the marching bands, and colorful floats as they travel through the streets of Chinatown for the annual Lunar New Year parade.     Hosting more than 30,000 attendees annually, the Chinese Lunar New Year Parade takes place in the heart of Chinatown. Join the crowds in celebration of the Year of the Rooster as the procession travels north along Wentworth Avenue from 24th Place up to Cermak Rd. Along the way don’t miss the marching bands, floats, traditional dragon and lion dance performances, a 100-ft paper dragon and more. TIME:   Sun 2/5, noon-3 PM, 224-534-9034, LOCATION: Wentworth Avenue from 24th Place to Cermak. FREE


new year parade in chicago


Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration    Celebrate the Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, with dance, art demonstrations, and a special appearance by the National Peking Opera Company.   Presented with the Chinese Fine Arts Society and the Chicago Chinese Cultural Institute at the Art Institute.  Their Chicago debut is highlighted by two of the most famous Peking Opera icons alive today, Mr. Yu Kuizhi and Ms. Li Shengsu, and features selections from some of the most acclaimed Peking Opera shows in China.     The China National Peking Opera Company (CNPOC; Chinese: 中国国家京剧院), originally named the National Peking Opera Theater of China, is one of the national ensembles of performance arts directly under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture of the People’s Republic of China.  The China National Peking Opera Company has visited over 50 countries, such as the United States, Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Hungary, Greece, Romania, the UK, Australia, and the former Soviet Union,and is a frequent performer at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts since its debut at the Kennedy Center 25 years ago and has been invited to perform on several occasions as a main attraction in their programs.

TIME:  Sat 1/28, 10:30 AM-4:30 PM, LOCATION:  Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S. Michigan, 312-443-3600, FREE with museum admission.


Chinese New Year Kickoff Celebration Celebrating its 33rd year, the Chinese Fine Arts Society kicks off the Year of the Rooster with a festive display of Chinese dance, music and martial arts. Enjoy performances by some of Chicago’s finest artists and, back by popular demand, a showcase by Jackie Chan’s Long Yun Kung Fu Troupe from Beijing. Presented in partnership with the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events    TIME:  Mon 1/30, noon-1 PM, LOCATION:  Preston Bradley Hall at the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington, 773-935-6169, FREE .


Argyle Lunar New Year Parade The annual Argyle Lunar New Year Parade is decades-old local tradition. Come for music, colorful lion dances, and more! Come along with a processional of local groups and floats starting at the Argyle EL stop – all to celebrate the start of the new Lunar Year, the year of the rooster! Join the Argyle Business Community, Uptown United, SSA #34, the Hip-Sing Association, and Alderman Harry Osterman for this special event!  TIME:   Sat 2/4, 1-2:30 PM, 773-878-1064,   LOCATION:  Parade will kick-off underneath the CTA Argyle red line station, FREE.


DePaul Chinese New Year Gala This is DePaul University’s 9th annual celebration of Chinese lunar new year (the Year of the Rooster  鸡年). Come out to enjoy authentic lunar new year food and exciting cultural performances. It is also a great opportunity to network with new and old friends with interest in China and other Asian countries and regions. All DePaul students, alumni, faculty, staff, as well as friends outside the DePaul community are welcome to attend. Free and open to the public. Dress code: business casual or festival clothing.. TIME:  Fri 1/27, 6-9 PM, LOCATION:  DePaul University Student Center, 2250 N. Sheffield  FREE


Neighborhoods of the World: China    Bring the entire family to celebrate and learn more about the Lantern Festival, celebrated at the close of the Chinese New Year holiday, with an afternoon of dance, music, and martial arts performances. Featuring the best of Chicagoland’s students and professionals keeping traditional Chinese arts alive, the Crystal Gardens will be transformed into a festive marketplace filled with vendors, craftsmen, a culinary sampling and activities for all ages.
. TIME Sun 2/12, noon-4 PM, LOCATION:  Navy Pier Crystal Gardens, 600 E. Grand, FREE

Bloomingdales – Bloomingdale’s is ringing in the Year of the Rooster on Saturday, January 28, 2017. Join us to celebrate Lunar New Year in store and enjoy a performance by traditional lion dancers, Chinese calligraphy, children’s paper crafts, red manicures, rooster balloon animals and more.   A stop at the Lunar New Year pop-up shop is a must! Take home the coveted limited edition “Little Rooster Bag” that is inspired by Bloomingdale’s iconic Little Brown Bag. Bloomingdale’s is thrilled to once again partner with the Chinese Fine Arts Society to offer authentic cultural performances and activities. Shoppers will have the opportunity to experience a traditional Lion Dance, have their name written in Chinese calligraphy, make a paper lantern, get a red manicure, and more.  Time: 10:00AM – 8:00PM       Location: Bloomingdale’s North Michigan Ave     FREE

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