PHOTOS: Metro Atlanta Celebrates Chinese New Year

An audience at the Culture Center of Taipei Economic & Cultural Office in Atlanta watches a lion and dragon dance performance. The two often get confused, but they are an important part of Chinese tradition.
Credit Virginie Kippelen / WABE
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This weekend, many in Chamblee, Georgia, celebrated the Chinese New Year with multicultural performances, authentic festival food and art exhibits.

One festival was held Feb. 17 and 18  at the Culture Center of Taipei Economic & Cultural Office in Atlanta. Another two-day celebration was held at the Atlanta Chinatown Mall. Families came to watch lion and dragon dances, a fashion show, Kung Fu, singing performances, musical performances and more.

Chinatown Mall is also home to a food court of six Chinese restaurants and two dine-ins that serve authentic food year-round.

Some of the groups that performed at Chinatown were the Atlanta Chinese Dance Company and the Maestros Cultural Arts and Events Center, which is a group based in Gwinnett County that helps young artists build their skills and network.

This year, the traditional Chinese New Year was officially Feb. 16, and 2018 is also the year of the dog. The Chinese New Year celebration is based off the traditional Chinese lunar calendar and used to be a time to honor ancestors and household and heavenly deities, according to History.com. The lunar calendar may have existed as early as the 14th century B.C.

What Does The Year Of The Dog Mean?

The dog is the 11th of all the zodiac animals and is associated with the earth, according to chinesenewyear2018.com. Other dog years have been 1934, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994 and 2006.

The zodiac sign is usually associated with loyalty and honesty.