Asia Pacific Cultural Center’s 24th Annual New Year Celebration to Feature China
By Lynn Castle
For more than two decades, Asia Pacific Cultural Center has presented their passion and joy surrounding the cultures of Asia and the Pacific Islands through their New Year Celebration. Returning to their live day-long format, the 2022 event will showcase China as the featured nation. The 24th annual event will be held on Saturday, February 19, from 11am to 6pm at the Sharon McGavick Center at Clover Park Technical School in Lakewood.
This exciting festival honors and celebrates the vibrant cultures of the 47 nations of Asia and the Pacific Islands represented by Asia Pacific Cultural Center in Tacoma. Visitors from around the state and beyond gather for this free-to-the-public event.
According to the chairperson of the New Year Celebration, as well as chair of the Hosting Committee, Dr. Belinda Louie, “This event gives the API community a chance to showcase our wonderful cultures and traditions through joyous presentations of dance, music, arts and crafts, and of course, delicious food.”
Audiences at the New Year Celebration will see demonstrations from featured nation China, but also Guam, Indonesia, Vietnam, Korea, Thailand, Samoa, Japan, Cambodia, Philippines, Tonga, Tahiti, Hawaii and India. Attendees will experience exotic music and dances, exciting martial arts, and many other wonderful cultural demonstrations.
As the featured country, several local Chinese organizations will contribute to the day-long stage performances with the longest set. Included in their set will be several Chinese dances including the Drum Dance and always popular Lion Dance. Martial art demonstrations and Chinese musical performances will also be featured.
Several retail vendor booths will be at the event, including many food booths selling delicious, authentic cultural foods. Clothing, décor, fabrics, and many culturally relevant items, will be on display and available for purchase.
“Acting as the host nation in 2022, the year of the Tiger, is special to the Chinese community here in Tacoma given its history. Now, more than 5,000 Chinese people call Tacoma and Pierce County home,” she added.
Many Chinese have returned to Tacoma, making great contributions to the city, county and state. For the last 25 years, APCC has been teaching in schools and various organizations about the history, as well as the arts, of the Chinese people. Now, their culture, history and traditions will be on full display at the New Year Celebration.
APCC is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to “bridge communities and generations through art, culture, education and business.” This past November, APCC celebrated its 25th year anniversary and is continuing to grow and expand its programs and offerings like this New Year Celebration.
In 2023, APCC will be launching a new building project of 21,000 square feet that will replace where they are now and will be open to the public in 2025. This building project will include, but not limited to, a demonstration kitchen that will be utilized to teach Asian Pacific culinary skills to aspiring students, preparing them to enter the workforce; a library, gallery, garden space, performance center with a full commercial kitchen, gift shop, a tearoom and more classrooms are also in the plans.
Executive Director of APCC Faaluaina Pritchard encourages everyone to attend the 24th Annual New Year Celebration. “We look forward to the event every year, but the 2022 event is incredibly special given the last two years,” she said. “We all need the opportunity to celebrate and enjoy each other.”
Celebrate the Year of the Tiger with APCC on February 19! For more information, please visit the APCC website at APCC96.org.
COVID-19 safety rules will be implemented accordingly, with temperature checks at the door, and wearing a mask required. Vaccine/booster will be available onsite.