Hampton Bays Elementary Celebrates Chinese New Year

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Colorful dragons and a few rabbits roamed the halls of the Hampton Bays Elementary School on Friday, February 11, to the delight of all. But not to worry, there was no actual wildlife at the school - it was just the kindergarteners putting on a Chinese New Year parade.

In celebration of the Chinese New Year (this year was the Year of the Rabbit) the young students donned colorful garb, created more than a few cardboard-and-streamer Chinese dragons, and walked a parade route through the hallways of the school. Red was the dominant color of the celebration, as it signifies life and prosperity and is often worn during celebrations in China.

The actual date of the 2011 Chinese New Year was February 3. Unlike the January 1st New Year celebrated in America and other countries, the holiday in China has a different date each year. And in China, animals are used to signify each New Year: the rabbit symbolizes graciousness, good manners, sound counsel, kindness and sensitivity to beauty; 2010 was the year of the mighty and ferocious tiger.

Following the annual tradition in Hampton Bays, students in the rest of the elementary grades lined the halls to enjoy the colorful and joyous presentations by each kindergarten class.