Kai Festival features Chinese New Year

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The International Kai Festival and Chinese New Year celebrations collide this weekend.

Founders’ Park and the Whakatu Marae will be filled with all kinds of international food on Monday but organisers are giving the Chinese New Year Celebration pride of place in the Energy Centre.

Miaolin Li  from the New Zealand Chinese Association Nelson Branch says the celebrations lessen homesickness in Nelson’s Chinese community and give them a chance to celebrate their culture with the locals.

“New Year in China marks the beginning of spring and is the biggest festival of the year for us – it is like Christmas and Thanksgiving all rolled into one,” says Miaolin.

The year of the Monkey will be ushered in with a range of Asian food, craft stalls and cultural performances including the Dragon Dance, traditional Chinese music, Gangnam Style and a contemporary Korean pop dance.

The Kai Festival will feature a wide range of international kai with doors opening at 10.30am and celebrations kicking off at noon.