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Celebrate Chinese New Year at The Commons

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The Columbus Chinese Association and Cummins Chinese Affinity Group will present the Columbus Chinese New Year Celebration from 3 to 8 p.m. Feb. 2 at The Commons.

Funded by a Welcoming Community II grant from Heritage Fund — The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County, the celebration is intended as an opportunity for Columbus residents to experience and become more familiar with Chinese culture.

Organizers hope the celebration, which previously was at Columbus East High School, tops last year’s record attendance of 600 as it settles into its new venue at The Commons.

The purpose of the celebration is twofold, according to Kai Wang, president of the Columbus Chinese Association.

If you go

What: Chinese New Year Celebration

When: 3 to 8 p.m. Feb. 2 (doors open at 2:30 p.m.)

Where: The Commons, 300 Washington St.

Admission: Tickets for dinner and show are sold separately this year — $10 for show and $10 for dinner for 14 and older; $5 for show and dinner for children 5 to 14; $1 for show and dinner for children under 5.

Silent auction items available for viewing at

Information: Contact Harry Huang at 812-925-5222

“The first is to enjoy our new year and make people happy,” Wang said. “And we would like to show Chinese culture to the people of Columbus.”

This year’s event offers more traditional Chinese music and programs than in previous years, Wang said. Included in the entertainment schedule are traditional operatic pieces, folk songs, pop music and karaoke.

The Columbus-Bloomington Folk Music Lovers and Joy Chinese instrument group, from Carmel, will perform folk songs and demonstrate Chinese musical instruments, including stringed instruments such as the mandolin, pipa and gu zheng, Wang said.

Local organizations, including the Columbus Chinese Church and Columbus Chinese Language School, also will perform.

A group of young, amateur singers from Columbus will compete in “The Voice of Columbus,” an adaptation of the popular talent show “The Voice of China,” which debuted on Chinese television in July, said Scarlett Wu, coordinator for the celebration’s performances.

“Many people have seen ‘The Voice of China,’” Wu said. “But a Columbus local may find ‘The Voice of Columbus’ more exhilarating and fun to watch.”

Short skits from Chinese theater and pop culture will be interspersed with the musical performances.

A calligrapher will demonstrate the fine art of Chinese calligraphy, using an ink brush, ink, paper and an ink stone, known as the Four Treasures of the Study, Wang said.

Several items donated by Columbus-area residents and sponsors will be available for purchase during an ongoing silent auction throughout the event. Traditional items up for bid include Chinese flowering tea, a red-lacquered box, embroidery, rubbings of stone inscriptions and clay dolls.

All proceeds from the auction benefit the development of the Columbus Chinese Language School through the Heritage Fund’s Columbus Chinese School Endowment Fund.

Traditional Chinese dishes, including Szechuan spicy chicken, salt and pepper shrimp, and double-cooked pork, will be catered by Ru Yi Restaurant of Columbus.

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