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HOUSTON Authentic Nolan Ryan Jersey , Feb. 5 (Xinhua) -- With the Chinese Spring Festival holiday season of 2016 approaching, residents in Houston of the U.S. state of Texas, with or without Asian origin, have stepped up their expectations for the annual celebrations starting next Monday.
One of the them is Barbara Quattro, a 72-year-old local retiree who has been helping coordinate a parade in a local community of Houston, the fourth largest U.S. city with a Chinese population of 300,000 Authentic Craig Biggio Jersey , to mark the start of the Chinese Lunar New Year, or the Year of Monkey.
""I live in the most diverse neighborhood in Houston, so we have wonderful opportunities to observe and celebrate the holidays of many different cultures without ever leaving home,"" said Quattro who claimed to be a fan of the traditional Chinese celebrations.
""I love to see the Chinese dragon dancer,"" said Quattro. Traditional Chinese customs including wearing native clothing and giving and receiving red envelopes with money in it also appealed to her.
In downtown Houston, a large celebration has been slated on Feb. 13 in front of the Houston City Hall. Last year's event drew over 20,000 participants coming all over Texas.
""This year Authentic Jeff Bagwell Jersey , we hope to double the size and interest of our annual event,"" Angela Chen, a festival coordinator, told Xinhua, ""If the weather is good, we are expecting many more because we have more exciting events that celebrate many cultures.""
At the grand gathering, Asian communities from countries including China J. R. Richard Jersey , Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippine will display their own unique ways of celebrations.
Dragon and lion dancing, stalls and vendors selling Chinese food, and traditional cultural demonstrations will be part of the annual event.
Houston Rockets, an American profession basketball team based in the space city Carlos Lee Jersey , announced earlier that its players will wear specially designed jackets printed with Chinese characters in honor of the traditional Chinese new year in three of their games during the week-long festival.
""We are proud to once again honor our many fans in China by wearing uniforms in recognition of their cultural celebration,"" Houston Rockets Owner Leslie Alexander told local media.
The Rockets has established a special bond with Chinese basketball fans since Yao Ming was selected by the team as the first overall pick in the 2002 draft of the National Basketball Association (NBA).
Yao's nine-year NBA career brought about unparalleled popularity to Houston Rockets, which has developed a tradition to add some Chinese elements in its games during the Spring Festival.
""It is truly an honor for our organization to continue this tradition,"" Alexander said.
For common people, the Spring Festival celebrations are more than just entertainment.
""It is also traditional for every family to thoroughly cleanse the house, in order to sweep away any bad fortune and to make way for good luck coming in the new year,"" Chen said.
It is not unusual Roy Oswalt Jersey , Chen said, to see windows and doors of Asian American homes decorated with red colored paper cut outs carrying popular themes of good fortune, happiness, wealth or longevity.
Bin Lu, an attorney born in northern China who came to Houston in 1996, said he enjoyed both the home and festival traditions of the Chinese New Year.
""I come from that culture. My wife and children come from northern China, where we invite family and friends over during the Chinese New Year to make dumplings and have some family reunion time Mike Scott Jersey ,"" said 52-year-old Lu.
He planned to attend local festivities and take his family to see the dragon and lion dancing as well as firecracker performance staged by local Asian communities.
""I'm very impressed,"" Lu said, ""The Asian community of Houston is growing and as it grows, so does the celebration of the Chinese New Year.""
""For the second year in a row, my law firm has offered me the opportunity to take the day off from work, with pay, and stay at home with my family Jose Cruz Jersey ,"" Lu said, ""It's a paid holiday now for Asians at my company.""
He expected the Chinese New Year to become an official holiday for Houston because of the rapidly growing Asian population in the city.
Quattro believes the Chinese Lunar New Year will become a celebration for people of all cultures.
""What's really fun is to see people of different cultures joining in the celebration,"" Quattro said, ""Everyone likes a dragon dancer and a party.""
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