Get ready to welcome the Year of The Ox – the Lunar New Year – which falls on February 12. This year, several of our usual favorite celebrations – like the Sunset Park parade – are missing, and a lot has changed since last year’s Year of the Rat in the Brooklyn Chinatown.
City’s Chinatowns were first to be unfairly and disproportionately hit by the virus and racist connotations. Better Chinatown announced that many of the parades this year will be postponed, perhaps until early Spring. The Brooklyn Chinese-American Association’s website says that service locations are closed, and programs are modified for safety. The Sunset Park Recreation Center, which usually hosts a parade, is also closed for now. We’ll keep checking, but we also wanted to encourage you all to show up for your neighbors, order from your favorite Chinese restaurants and shops, and join them and us all in welcoming what will hopefully be a much better year.
To give you some options and a start to making plans, throughout the whole month of February you can participate in Send Chinatown Love’s Lunar New Year Crawl. It’s spaced throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens, with 29 participating vendors. You can log your progress and receipts via their passport. With every three you log, you’re entered into a raffle to win giveaway baskets. The participating Brooklyn spots are as follows: Shunfa Bakery, Melonpanna, Wing Hing, Parlay, Prince Tea House, Made the Cut, Pho 60, and Delicacy Passion Patisserie.
Celebrate at home, or send some joy to family far away with these Brooklyn choices on Goldbelly, a luxury delivery service. Try the raindrop cake from Darren Wong, previously only available at Smorgasburg, or a variety of ice cream choices from Noona’s, Hannah Bae’s shop that specializes in Asian-inspired flavors like golden sesame.
This local Top Chef Masters alum is teaching a step-by-step virtual dumpling making class. The class is $49.99 per screen, and will leave you with pork, shrimp, and chive dumplings to celebrate.
Grab the “Year of the Ox” combo from Mission Chinese in Bushwick, with an Oklahoma onion cheeseburger, Sichuan waffle fried, and a Thai tea for $19.99.
This East Williamsburg spot has partnered with Main Street Imperial Chinese Gourmet in Flushing for their take-home menu this year. Each ticket is for two people, and includes wealthy stir-fried rice balls, braised heritage pork knuckle in superior broth and long noodles, golden egg and cabbage, and buttery shortbread cookies with roasted pineapple ham. You’ll also receive a gift tote with “symbolic goodies” inside, all for $88.
Join the Brooklyn Children’s Museum for a celebration and learning session. Create an ox puppet and parade around the museum rooftop with the Chinatown Young Lions’ lion puppets. There are two sessions available, with tickets for $13.
Celebrate the new year through dance with the BPL’s virtual event. Enjoy traditional dance and music from Zhou Yi and the Ba Ban Chinese Music Society, virtually.
Test your luck at Albee Square, where they’ll be handing out lucky red envelopes— some of which will have gift cards to spend at Dekalb Market Hall. You’ll also be able to see a traditional lion dance at the square.