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When Is Lunar New Year 2020? The Parties Don't Stop When January Starts

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After the excitement of Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year’s Eve passes, January can seem like it’s lacking excitement (and decidedly not lacking frigid days). Sure, you can work hard to maintain those New Year’s resolutions, but if you’re looking to keep the good times rolling, then you’ll want to know when Lunar New Year is in 2020, and how you can celebrate.

Mark your calendars, because Lunar New Year is on Jan. 25, 2020, according to China Highlights, and will usher in the Year of the Rat. The holiday, sometimes referred to as Chinese New Year or Spring Festival, changes each year based on the lunar calendar, and in 2020 it falls on a Saturday, which means you have a full day to celebrate.

It’s Chinese custom to thoroughly clean your house before the arrival of the new year to usher out all the bad luck from the previous year and make room for prosperity and fortune. I love the idea of doing a winter version of a spring cleaning as your house tends to fill with new stuff around the holidays; you could donate old toys and clothes to organizations that can really use the help, especially since donations may fall off after the holiday season.

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It’s also customary for Chinese families to decorate their homes in preparation for Lunar New Year, (per China Highlights), with lanterns, paper cuttings, or even kumquat trees. You could fill a vase of blooming flowers like orchids, plum blossoms, or peonies, which sounds like a gorgeous way to brighten up some of that January gloom.

Lunar New Year is really about spending quality time with family and friends while sharing a meal and good conversation. Some families make foods that are traditionally considered lucky; you can try your hand at making spring rolls, which are said to bring fortune because they look like little bars of gold, per Taste Of Home, or sweet rice balls which symbolize family unity. Fun (nerdy) fact alert: the Chinese word for "rice balls" (tang yuan), is very similar to the word for "reunion" (tuan yuan) which is how the two came to be associated, according to Epicure. If you feel a little slump after the holidays (perhaps mixed with a bit of relief) remember Lunar New Year is just around the corner.