Did you know that together, those in the Mable community can speak over 30 languages? People on our platform are truly representative of the diversity of our communities across Australia. This month, we’re celebrating Chinese New Year, and 16 February 2018 marks the beginning of it.
Chinese New Year, is also known as the Spring Festival or the Lunar New Year. It’s the Year of the Dog, who is known as loyal, honest and always ready to help others. Whether you’re planning on a family meal, visiting a market or joining a street festival, there’s something for everyone. We’ve included some useful mobility and access information to help you plan your journey.
Sydney has the largest Chinese population in Australia and its Chinese New Year Festival will run from 16 February to 4 March. No major festival would be complete without some serious fireworks so on opening night, head down to Circular Quay at 8.15pm. There will be six community performances during the Festival, offering a mix of traditional and contemporary dance, drumming, hip-hop and stilt walking, with performers from China, Korea, Thailand and Japan. There will also be 12 lunar lanterns around the traps so on a quieter night, you could check out the Dog at Circular Quay.
In Melbourne, the Chinese New Year Festival will run on Sunday 18 February. Dai Loong, Melbourne’s Big Dragon, will weave through Chinatown and down to Federation Square for the New Year countdown. Events include food stalls, Buddhist prayer, ping-pong finals, an afternoon tea and a dumpling-eating competition! The event is wheelchair-accessible. If you’re interested in the Vietnamese Tet Festival, this will be held at the Exhibition Pavilion on 3-4 February 2018.
Melbourne offers Travellers Aid, providing travel-related support to people who are ageing including accessible toilets and a rest area. The service is available at City Village on Bourke Street as well as at Southern Cross and Flinders Street stations.
The Chinese Lunar New Year is also being celebrated on Sunday 18 February in Brisbane in Chinatown Mall in Fortitude Valley. The entertainment will include lion dancers, fire shows and street performers.
The Gold Coast celebrations are happening on Saturday 17 February in Southport. As well as an Asian street food market and a fireworks display, there will be a cool laneway bar and a film screening. You can indicate your interest on Facebook. Click here to navigate the Southport CBD mobility map.
Adelaide’s Festival will run from 10am to 10pm on Saturday 17 February and include lion dancers, firecrackers and martial artists. The Australian Symphony Orchestra will also perform a Chinese New Year Concert, bringing together traditional Australian and Chinese influences for a unique cross-cultural experience. Think Australian didjeridu, drums from Shanghai and two local pianists. The Adelaide Festival Centre offers step-free access, wheelchair loan and audio assistance. For the best seating and help with other access requirements, contact the Centre on 131 246.
There are plenty of smaller celebrations happening in and around other cities in Australia. For info, click here.
Brisbane-based Cenly Wong was born in Malaysia, grew up in New Zealand and has been in Australia for more than 20 years. She is a Mandarin speaker who is very involved in the community and does a lot of volunteering. Cenly says, “I know exactly where to take clients for an authentic Chinese New Year experience involving dinner and performance, crafts and some lion dancing.”
Why not book a worker who speaks the language to take your parents out for a Chinese New Year celebration? You can also book transport to a family gathering. Post a Job now.