The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Lunar New Year celebrated in Wahkiakum County


February 2, 2017

Wahkiakum High School exchange students Natthanon "Earth" Sakworawich from Thailand, Long Nguyen from Vietnam, and "Steven" Yu Xiao Rui celebrated the Lunar New Year with a bonfire and other activities. Courtesy photo.

While many Asians around the world celebrated the Lunar New Year this past weekend, three Asian High School students attending Wahkiakum High School had their own celebration right here in Wahkiakum County.

Natthanon "Earth" Sakworawich from Thailand, Long Nguyen from Vietnam, and "Steven" Yu Xiao Rui from China spent this last Friday, Saturday and Sunday celebrating the Oriental holiday, albeit with American characteristics.

They began the weekend on Friday January 27th (New Years Eve) with a big meal built around a special kind of fried rice that closed out the Year of the Monkey.

Saturday, the first day of the "Year of the Rooster," began with a huge noontime meal consisting of a wide variety of Asian favorites. As all three boys are involved one way or the other with the Wahkiakum High School basketball teams, they took a break from eating for a while during the afternoon and early evening to attend the games, but after the games ended, they resumed eating and played traditional family card games until late into the night.

Sunday was the three-day wrap-up, which began with breakfast and ended with a big bonfire. Steven Yu commented, "I think bonfires are one of my favorite things here in America, and this one was one is special."

All three boys commented that this will be a New Year that they will remember forever as their special American Lunar New Year.

The Asian zodiac is based on a 12 year cycle, with each of the 12 years being represented by a different animal-and each with very different characteristics. The calendar is also based on the lunar cycle, so each year begins at a slightly different time, very similar to how the Easter Holiday changes from year to year. This year is the Year of the Fire Rooster, and Roosters are noted for being the epitome of fidelity and punctuality. Roosters are said to be the most motivated animal in the Chinese zodiac and always put their careers first.


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