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Celebrate The Chinese Lunar New Year And Asian Arts At The Southampton Cultural Center

Sydney A. Braat

Chinese New Year Festival at The Concourse. (Courtesy Photo)

2017 is bringing all kinds of exciting, new activities to the Hamptons community! The first ever Chinese Lunar New Year/Asian Arts Celebration will take place on Saturday, February 11th from 3 to 7 p.m. at Southampton Cultural Center's Levitas Center for the Arts. Stop by to participate in family friendly workshops, live stage performances by Asian instrumentalists, singers, and dancers. There will even be a "Taste of Asia" buffet reception. It's certainly not a day to miss!

"We at the Southampton Cultural Center (SCC) are delighted to be hosting this Lunar New Year celebration as part of our cultural outreach," said Kirsten Lonnie, Executive Director of Southampton Cultural Center.

Suiv Lee, EdD, Columbia Teachers College, is the brains behind this cultural master piece. Dr. Lee is an adjunct professor of mathematics at Adelphi University and is also a commercial real estate specialist with Douglas Elliman in Southampton. Dr. Lee also chaired the first Multinational Cultural Festival of New York three years ago for the Asian-American Cultural Circle of Unity (AACCU), a nonprofit organization founded to promote cultural awareness and appreciation in the local areas on Long Island. Dr. Lee enlisted the help of Karen Bomzer, AACCU co-founder and communication director, who also works as a copywriter and publicist. In addition, Dr. Lee worked with Rich Kruse, Luana McGunnigle, and Kirsten Lonnie.

Calligraphy brushes. (Courtesy Photo)

The Chinese Lunar New Year/Asian Arts Celebration will open with the Lion Dance performed by Long Island's Ryu She Taiko. The performance is always a crowd-pleaser and an exciting traditional Chinese dance performed on special occasions for good luck! It is believed in the Chinese culture that the lion is an auspicious animal. The lion dance imitates a lion's movements or demonstrates martial arts agility as others beat drums, clash cymbals, and play gongs.

Following the Lion Dance, there will be a series of Children's Workshops from 3 to 5 p.m. taught by popular local visual artists such as Hiroko Uraga-Senese who specializes in traditional Japanese arts. The workshops will include face painting, henna, calligraphy, and brush painting. All workshops are free and open to anyone.

The final activity of the day is the stage performance from 5 to 6 p.m. in the auditorium. The event will showcase accomplished artists who have performed in prestigious venues throughout the New York metro area. Their countries of origin include China, India, Japan, and Okinawa. The celebration will end with "A Taste of Asia" food reception where all guests can sample delicious, authentic cuisine.

Make sure to stop by the henna booth to get a unique design done on your hands. (Courtesy Photo)

Admission to the stage performance is $20 for adults and $10 for students under 21. The food reception is complimentary.

The Asian Arts Celebration is made possible by the help of the sponsors including The Butterfly Foundation, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Corp., and produce supplier Race West.

Southampton Cultural Center is located at 25 Pond Lane in Southampton. For more information, call 631 287-4377 or visit at www.scc-arts.org.

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