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Cultural bonanza across the city to thrill Spring Festival holiday crowd

    Cultural bonanza across the city to thrill Spring Festival holiday crowd

    A boy, surrounded by colorful lanterns, takes a selfie at Shanghai Happy Valley.

    Folk cultural activities, lantern fairs, exhibitions and performances will be held across the city through the upcoming Chinese New Year holiday, offering diversified options for tourists as well as local residents.

    Guyi Garden will host several exhibitions, including woodcut print nianhua, or Chinese New Year painting featuring festival celebration and traditional Chinese opera stories, fruit and vegetable bearing auspicious meanings, and orchids.

    The garden has been festooned with 500-plus palace lanterns and visitors are invited to guess the riddles written on pieces of paper stuck on the lanterns, a traditional activity during the Spring Festival. Shadow plays and dragon and lion dance parades will also be staged at the garden in suburban Jiading District.

    Fengjing Water Town will stage traditional Chinese wedding rituals and visitors can make their own paper-cutting artworks. Traditional Chinese opera performances will be held on ancient stages, and “the God of Fortune,” or caishen, will interact with visitors, according to the Shanghai Tourism Administration.

    Shanghai Happy Valley in suburban Songjiang District has been decorated with 50 sets of lanterns made by about 100 craftsmen from Zigong City, southwest China’s Sichuan Province. Jiangzhou drum performance, an intangible cultural heritage, and street comic shows by overseas artists will be staged as well.

    The Chenshan Botanic Garden, also in Songjiang, will host a spring flower exhibition featuring tulips, peonies, and orchids, which add a splash of color to the garden. The exhibition will last until March 5. A Chinese narcissus exhibition will take place at Gongqing Forest Park in Yangpu District.

    The Baoshan District Library will host a free pottery and porcelain exhibition, with works shaped into dogs, the zodiac animal of the year.

    Suburban Jinshan District’s Donglin Temple will host a traditional bell-tolling ceremony on the eve of the Chinese New Year. Bell tolling is believed to absolve sins and bring good luck, while eliminating grief and worries.

    Shanghai Tower will stage lion dances and woodcut display while an exhibition about film culture will also be hosted there in cooperation with the Shanghai Film Museum.

    Shanghai Zoo will host a number of dog-related science popularization activities. And about 4,000 plum blossom trees are in full bloom at Century Park in the Pudong New Area, which will also host a shutterbug contest.

    A paper cut exhibition, lantern guessing activity and street performances will be held on Nanxiang Old Street in Jiading, while a plum blossom exhibition is under way at Shanghai Haiwan National Forest Park in suburban Fengxian District, featuring some 42,000 plum blossom trees of more than 120 varieties.

    The flowers are of various colors such as red, white, pink, green and yellow.

    The Chinese New Year is on February 16 and the holiday runs from February 15 to 21.