THE Hunter’s Chinese community will usher in the Year of the Snake over the next two weeks following the start on Sunday of Chinese New Year celebrations.
Chinese New Year, also called Lunar New Year, is a cultural celebration that starts on the first new moon of the northern hemisphere spring and lasts until the full moon rises 15 days later.
The year 2013 is said to be the year of the water snake, with each cycle of 12 Chinese zodiac years moving through water, wood, fire, earth and metal signs. In Chinese culture water snakes are said to be influential, insightful and more flexible than other snakes.
Some of the traditions of Chinese New Year include cleaning the house before new year to get rid of the past year’s bad luck and passing red envelopes to friends for prosperity.
Craig Louey, his wife Yuli and their daughter Jasmine, 6, helped mark the start of the year at Blackbutt Reserve yesterday when they got up close to a real snake.
Mr Louey, of Hamilton, said Chinese New Year celebrations for them typically involved a family dinner and his wife would call family at home in China.
‘‘Yuli definitely misses being home in China during New Year,’’ Mr Louey said.
You come under the sign of the snake if you were born in the years 1905, 1917, 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001 or 2013.
Most compatible careers are said to be scientists, analysts, jewellers, spiritual leaders, sociologists, astrologers, investigators and painters.
People born in the Year of the Snake include Helen Reddy, Peter Garrett, Mark Waugh, Steve Waugh, Ada Nicodemou, Cadel Evans, Barry Hall, Michael Klim, Jessica Mauboy, Darren Lockyer, David Wenham, Audrey Hepburn, Howard Hughes, Grace Kelly, Oprah Winfrey and Virginia Woolf.