For the month of January, HHS Center welcomes the newest group of Cultural
Katarzyna from Poland (6 month program)
Maria from Mexico (12 month program)
Sophie from Germany (12 month program)
Ice Skating at Beihai Park
On January 14th HHS participants and staff hit the ice (some harder than others) for some winter fun. They spent the day skating on the lake at Beihai Park and exploring the park’s hidden treasures.
Beihai (北海公园) is home to The Bai Ta (White Pagoda) and The Nine Dragon Wall.
In the summer, the park makes a perfect place for Beijingers to escape the heat and go for a scenic stroll by the water. In the winter, the lake freezes over and visitors to the park can rent skates or sleds which are hand propelled with ski poles.
Traditional Spring Festival Decorations
Starting on the New Year and lasting for the next week is the Spring Festival, a time to celebrate with family and welcome a new wave of luck. This year Chinese New Year falls on February 10. Spring Festival is a vibrant and lively time of year with firecrackers going off and homes and storefronts decorated with red and gold lanterns and traditional decorations for good luck. 春联 chūnlián, or Spring Festival couplets, are traditionally hung on both sides and above doorways during Chinese Spring Festival for good luck, health, and prosperity. The couplets are usually left in place until the next year, when they are taken down and replaced with a new set. These doorway decorations offer poetic wishes to those who enter and are usually accompanies by the character 福 fú meaning good fortune. this character is often hung up-side-down so that good luck can be drown from above, down into the home. On January 22, HHS Cultural Ambassadors gathered to create their own chūnlián. Their Chinese teacher explained the history and importance of the decorations before CAs practiced their calligraphy. Red paper was used as the traditional color for luck.