Oberlin Blogs

Chinese New Year Banquet!

February 28, 2010

Zoe McLaughlin ’11

Last year, I joined CSA right before the Chinese New Year banquet happened, so I had no real idea of what to expect. This year, I did. I planned to spend my whole Saturday in the Root Room of Carnegie, and that's exactly what happened. We started the day by bringing things over from Asia House. Since the lion lives in my room, I was in charge of that.

Students hanging red and yellow streamers

We also had to go to CDS (Campus Dining Services) to pick up tablecloths for all our tables, go to Wilder (the Student Union) to get in our room and find decorations, and order pizza.

Paper bags with candy

There was a long discussion about how we were going to set up the tables: How many Clementines per table? How many pieces of ginger candy? How exactly were we supposed to tape a tea light in a lantern? Did that even matter, since they wouldn't be able to see the tea light anyway? It was all quite important, I assure you.

The root room door with tea lights

Setting up for a full day can get a bit tiresome, but this was brightened up by the aforementioned pizza. Also, there were other authentic Chinese snacks that people brought.

Packages of Chinese snacks

I hold that you can judge the authenticity of a product by the quality of English on its wrapper. Please appreciate the English here: "Hey, so delicious. Let us try it fast," and "Green Ecology Limitless Magnificence."

A table with a "reserved" tab, oranges, and a lantern

When I wasn't sticking up gaudy red and gold decorations, I was rehearsing for the Lion Dance. I was Buddha again, and I think the performance went pretty well. I don't have photos, because the person I gave my camera to forgot to take pictures. I assume that means she thought it was so good she forgot what she was supposed to be doing.

Besides the Lion Dance, we also had a Chinese group from Westlake come to perform (they brought kids, who were adorable), a pianist, and a silk ribbon dance.

A student drumming, a dragon costume sits next to them

I don't have any photos from the actual event. My excuse is that I was taking the tickets the whole time (except when I was dancing), so I didn't get to see anything. And I'm sticking to that excuse.

I'll leave you instead with the doors to the Root Room, looking quite spiffy if I do say so myself.

The drummer in the middle of two people wearing dragon costumes

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