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The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

Ways to Celebrate the Lunar New Year in Washington, DC

Honor the turn of the calendar with these Lunar & Chinese New Year activities and events in DC.

Lunar New Year, a celebration known in China as “Spring Festival,” begins on Feb. 1, 2022. With a variety of Asian cultures in the DC area, including Chinatown, the nation's capital features numerous in-person and virtual ways to celebrate the holiday. We’ve detailed events and activities in Washington, DC that can help you kick off the Year of the Tiger just right.


Chinese New Year Night: Washington Wizards vs. Los Angeles Clippers - Jan. 25

The hometown Wizards okay right in the heart of Chinatown at the Capital One Arena. On Tuesday, Jan. 25, the Wiz will take on the Los Angeles Clippers on a night themed around the Chinese New Year. The celebration will feature talent all over the court, as the Wiz look to Bradley Beal to lead them to victory.
7 p.m. |  Tickets
Capital One Arena, 601 F Street NW, Washington, DC 20004


The REACH Winter Lanterns - Jan. 27 - Feb. 6

The Kennedy Center welcomes you and your entire family to this stunning on-site display of Winter Lanterns at The REACH. Approximately 100 of these lanterns will be illuminated on the grounds, showcasing the incredible work of Chinese artists. In total, the lanterns are made up of 10,000 colored LED lights.
More info
John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 2700 F Street NW, Washington, DC 20566


Lunar New Year’s Eve Reunion Dinner: Holiday-Inspired Cooking Demos – Jan. 31

The Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art, known for an extensive collection of vibrant and colorful Asian art, will ring in the Year of the Tiger with this virtual, food-filled celebration that will pay homage to the traditional "reunion dinner" held to honor the Lunar New Year. In just one hour, learn to make three different dishes that represent the fondest collective memories of three local award-winning Asian American chefs.
6-7 p.m. |  Register


Celebrate Lunar New Year at CUT by Wolfgang Puck - Feb. 3

CUT by Wolfgang Puck

On Thursday, Feb. 3, Chef Andrew Skala welcomes Chef Scott Drewno, Chef Danny Lee, Chef Mei Lin (a Top Chef winner) and Chef Tetsu Yahagi into the kitchen for a three-course, family-style dinner at CUT by Wolfgang Puck, located inside Rosewood Washington, D.C. The experience will include a dim sum-inspired first course and shareable main course, abundant sides and dessert. The menu will highlight classic Asian-inspired dishes and ingredients reimagined through the lens of modern American fine dining. Think scallion pull-apart bread served with whipped toasted chili butter, Maine lobster and black truffle cheung fun or wagyu beef and duck liver bao.
5-9 p.m. |  Reserve
CUT by Wolfgang Puck, 1050 31st Street NW, Washington, DC 20007


Smithsonian American Art Museum's Virtual Lunar New Year Celebration – Feb. 5

The Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) honors the Lunar New Year with this free, virtual celebration presented in partnership with the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the United States of America. Enjoy streamed video performances of dances, acrobatics and yo-yo tricks by the Madison Chinese Dance Academy as well as demonstrations of traditional Chinese crafting and Lunar New Year traditions, including the classic "lion dance". Be sure to explore even more activities on SAAM’s Lunar New Year Family Zone.
More info


Watch the Washington Capitals in action

The Capitals also play in Chinatown's Capital One Arena. The 2018 Stanley Cup champs have 7 home games between Jan. 10 and Feb. 2. You won't want to miss superstar Alex Ovechkin, known around DC as “The Great 8," send the crowd into a frenzy or centers Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeny Kuznetsov make some of the game’s flashiest plays.
Capital One Arena, 601 F Street NW, Washington, DC 20004


Explore the Penn Quarter/Chinatown neighborhood


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Penn Quarter/Chinatown is one of the liveliest neighborhoods in the District. There are plenty of restaurants nearby, as well as the shopping hub that is CityCenterDC. The Smithsonian American Art Museum and the National Portrait Gallery are housed in the same building across the street, while the National Gallery of Art is a short walk away. You can also check out a play at Ford’s Theatre or Shakespeare Theatre Company.


Check out the Kennedy Center's virtual Lunar New Year programming

The Kennedy Center offers a plethora of digital programming focused on the Lunar New Year, including performances from past celebrations, on its website. Enjoy videos and an array of virtual learning options from DC's most beloved cultural institution.

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