The Lunar New Year Celebration, one of the major Chinese cultural events of the year in Maine, isn’t affected by the coronavirus outbreak and will go on as planned Saturday.

“Although our organization is concerned for those in China impacted by the coronavirus, it will not affect our local event and all scheduled programs and performances will be going on as planned,” said Jennifer DeCristoforo, president of the Chinese & American Friendship Association of Maine.

While worldwide cases of coronavirus have topped 8,000 – with most in China – there have so far been only six confirmed cases in the United State and none in Maine.

The Lunar New Year celebration will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday at the Westbrook Middle School and Performing Arts Center. The cost is $8 for adults, $6 for children, $30 for a group of five.

Some of the events include:

• Chinese Folk Art Workshop, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., a Boston-area troupe that performs traditional Chinese dance routines.

• Chinese food lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., a Tea workshop and tasting. Michael Connelly of Little Red Cup will feature rare, unusual aged teas.

• During the entire day, those attending can check out the Confucius Institute at the University of Southern Maine, Lion dancers, Chinese crafts and martial arts demonstrations.

• Learn how to read and pronounce Mandarin Chinese characters with Viveca Kwan, from 10:30-11:30 a.m.

• “Wisdom and Stupidity in Early China” a talk about ancient Chinese stories by Jim Behuniak, associate professor of philosophy, Colby College.


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