Galway welcomed in the Chinese New Year of the Monkey.
On Sunday, 21 February 2016, around 500 people gathered at the Knocknacarra Community Centre in a festive integrated celebration to welcome the start of the year of the Fire Monkey.
Jointly produced by the Irish Chinese Society Galway, the Knocknacarra Football Club and Connacht Special Olympics the afternoon’s festivities were specially designed to give opportunities for the Chinese members of the Galway diaspora to mingle with the FC and the Special Olympics. Many families came out for the occasion.
His worship the Mayor of Galway City Frank Fahy was the guest of honor and opened the day with a few words regarding the richness of culture that the Chinese citizens bring to the city and the county. He was joined my Mr Wu LiJun the Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy and Mr Jiang JingBing the Secretary. Kam Chin the Chairman of the Irish Chinese Society Galway and Gerry Carroll the Chairman of the Knocknacarra Football Club and Michael Carty the Coordinator of the Connacht Special Olympics were the other hosts of the afternoon.
The afternoon began with presentations of traditional Chinese dance, tai qi, paper cutting, calligraphy and traditional Chinese painting. These demonstrations were all produced with the kind participation of the University College Cork Confucius Institute.
Later on the children could all engage in the activities themselves and try their hand at paper cutting and calligraphy, there was also plenty of entertainment for the younger ones with face painting and balloons to keep them happy. There were numerous games of football led by the KFC.