Chinatown Welcomes Year of the Dragon With Firecracker Ceremony

It was a dramatic scene in Sara D. Roosevelt Park earlier today, as community leaders and residents ushered in the Year of the Dragon. The event kicked off a series of festivities in celebration of the Lunar Chinese New Year.  The annual Firecracker Ceremony drew a big crowd in spite of the soggy weather.

Both this event and this coming Sunday’s parade are sponsored by the Better Chinatown Society. See a lot more photos and video after the jump.


There were lots of local dignitaries observing, including City Comptroller John Liu, Assembly member Grace Meng, City Council member Margaret Chin and State Senator Daniel Squadron.

Comptroller John Liu addresses the crowd just before the fireworks went off.
City Councilmember Margaret Chin helped welcome the Year of the Dragon.

As the speeches were ending, U.S. Senator Kristin Gillibrand bounded across the roped off area where the fireworks were about to go off, entourage following closely behind. She wished everyone in Chinatown Happy New Year and underscored how important it will be this year to keep the focus on job creation throughout New York. With that, the big show got underway.