Year of the Monkey arriving in Washington

Updated: 2016-01-31 05:18

By CHEN WEIHUA in Washington(

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Year of the Monkey arriving in Washington

A girl paints a monkey on Saturday morning in the Kogod Courtyard of American Art Museum in Washington where the Chinese New Year Family event was held to greet the Year of the Monkey, which falls on Feb 8 this year. [Photo by Chen Weihua/China Daily USA]

Not feeling the mood Chinese New Year celebration in Washington? The scenes at the Smithsonian American Art Museum on Saturday told a different story.

Just as the door opened at 11:30am, crowds, mostly parents with young children, poured into the Kogod Courtyard of the Greek Revival architecture.

Inside the enclosed courtyard with glass canopy, lion dancers from Johns Hopkins University were getting ready. After a brief lion awakening ceremony in front of the crowds participated by Chinese Ambassador to the US Cui Tiankai, Smithsonian Institution Under Secretary for History, Art and Culture Richard Kurin and American Art Museum Director Elizabeth Broun, the lion dance, a traditional program to celebrate the Chinese New Year, proceeded to the main stage, accompanied by the sound of drum and gong and traditional Chinese folk music.

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