With one of the biggest Chinatowns in North America, Chicago welcomes Chinese New Year with a host of celebrations during the end of January and beginning of February. Officially starting on January 28, the Year of the Rooster will be commemorated with parades, dinners, special packages and events all over the city. Many of the festivities are FREE, so mark your calendars to join in some of these cultural celebrations!
Chinese New Year Afternoon Tea, Dinner and Cocktails at the Peninsula
The intricate traditions of Chinese afternoon tea including a Chinese savory dish, Chinese sweets and tea will be offered in the lobby of Peninsula Chicago on January 26–29 to toast the New Year. The Shanghai Terrace Restaurant will supply a Chinese New Year six-course dinner featuring authentic dishes such as double-boiled Chinese ginseng soup and chilled mango with rice-pudding soup. Guests can also toast the New Year with the "Little Red Rooster" cocktail at The Bar.
Chinese Dance, Calligraphy and Foods at the Art Institute of Chicago
The Art Institute of Chicago kicks off the year of the rooster with a series of Chinese New Year events beginning on January 28. Performances of Guzheng or Chinese zither, a lion dance and a presentation by the China National Peking Opera Company will be offered throughout the day as will a calligraphy demonstration, in the Ryan Learning Center. A special installation of Chinese interiors in the Thorne Miniature Rooms runs through February 11 and the Museum Café serves up stir-fry and dumplings through February 11.
Chinese New Year Kick-Off at Chicago Cultural Center | FREE
The Chinese Fine Arts Society presents an afternoon of Chinese art forms at the Chicago Cultural Center, in the Preston Bradley Hall at noon. Guests will view exciting displays of Chinese music, dance and martial arts, including a preview of Jackie Chan's acclaimed Long Yun Kung Fu Troupe.
China National Peking Opera Company at Studebaker Theater
The Chicago debut of the internationally acclaimed China National Peking Opera Company will showcase selections from some of the ensemble's most famous shows. Considered one of China's most innovative cultural treasures, the troupe will perform at 7 p.m. at the Studebaker Theater.
Argyle Lunar New Year Celebration | FREE
Uptown's vibrant Argyle Street will come alive with colorful lion and dragon dancers parading down the center at 1 p.m. Starting under the Argyle Red Line CTA stop, the Argyle Lunar New Year Celebration will head east along Argyle and south along Sheridan Road.
Chinatown Lunar New Year Celebration | FREE
The ultimate Chinese New Year celebration takes place in Chinatown, with an eye-popping parade that attracts a crowd of more than 30,000. The parade kicks off at noon at 24th and Wentworth with floats, marching bands and a 100-ft. paper dragon.
2017 Chinese Lunar New Year Dinner
Hosted by the Chicago Chinatown Chamber of Commerce, the annual dinner features a multi-course feast of traditional New Year dishes including braised ham hocks and lobster stir-fried with ginger, a red envelope ceremony and the lion dance. The Lunar New Year Dinner will take place at Phoenix restaurant from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $75 per person.
For a complete lineup of events citywide, visit choosechicago.com/chinesenewyear. And gear up for more marquee celebrations this winter! Happening during this same time are Chicago Restaurant Week and Chicago Theatre Week.