Help ring in the upcoming Lunar New Year (Year of the Goat) with the Gund Kwok Lion and Dragon Dance Troupe, as they parade through the streets of Chinatown and lion dance for the stores and restaurants, as well as perform on the main stage on Sunday, March 1st. Gund Kwok is one of 8-10 troupes performing that day. You also get to experience an unforgettable day of Chinese New Year sights, sounds, and smells!
Gund Kwok, the only Asian Women Lion & Dragon Dance Troupe in the United States, was established in February 1998 to give Asian women an opportunity to express their creativity, power and strength through performing the lion and dragon dances.
You will be assigned to be a flag carrier, crowd control person, runner, cart lugger, photographer, videographer, or helping with miscellaneous tasks.
You will get to borrow and wear a Gund Kwok hooded sweatshirt to identify that you are with the Troupe.
Please dress in layers and wear hats, scarves and gloves/mittens. Please wear black pants and comfortable, appropriate footwear. Ear plugs, hand and toe warmer packets are provided if needed. Please do not carry any backpacks or other bags on you – personal belongings may be kept at the GK “Den” (someone is stationed during the entire day to track the comings and goings of all volunteers and troupe members, and to keep an eye on your belongings).
Breakfast and lunch are provided. ALL volunteers are invited to stay for a free dinner that evening to thank you for your time and commitment (Restaurant: Hei La Moon, in Chinatown)
Days prior to the Festival, you will receive documents and information for the day of the Festival, including FAQ’s and Volunteer Role Descriptions, and information for the Gund Kwok Volunteer Liaison (your main volunteer contact on that day).
Take public transportation. Street parking is virtually non-existent on the day of the event.
MBTA: Green Line – Boylston Street T stop; Orange Line – Chinatown or New England Medical Center T stops, Red Line – Downtown Crossing or Park Street T stops.
There will be two lion parades at 12:30PM and 2:30PM in addition to two performances at 1PM and 3PM. Admission will be FREE!
Free admission for all! Visit the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to ring in the Year of the Goat! Explore Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese traditions while enjoying activities, demonstrations, and performances throughout the day. Be sure to look for the vibrant floral arrangements around the building and stop in for an Asian-inspired lunch at the Garden cafeteria.
Story Hour | 10:30–11:30 am and 1–2 pm; Gallery 285 Sign Language Interpretation
Presentation: Lunar New Year around the World | 11 am–Noon; Riley Seminar Room, 156
Musical Performance: Hapum Haneun Hama | 12:15–12:45 and 2:15–2:45 pm; Gallery 250 Lion Dance Parades | 12:30 and 2:30 pm; Shapiro Family Courtyard and Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art Lion Dance Performances | 1 pm and 3 pm; Remis Auditorium
Community Arts Initiative Partner Spotlight | 10 am–4:45 pm; Druker Family Pavilion, Room 159
In last week’s issue of the Sampan Newspaper, the GK Dragonettes were featured in an article re-capping the Boston Chinatown Lunar New Year Festival. Beautiful photo!
Chinatown rings in Lunar New Year By Mary “Molly” Finn
On a bright and crisp morning, the greater Chinatown community gathered in Philips Square to begin the Year of the Horse with good fortune and luck on Feb. 9. Several local leaders and community sponsors greeted the crowd in Chinese and English for a productive new year and appreciation for the traditional performances.
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh pledged to work with his council to make sure long-term residents can stay in Chinatown.
Boston District 2 city councilor Bill Linehan thanked Chinatown families, residents of District 2, for their support. Linehan said the Year of the Horse is symbolic for him because he has been called a “cowboy.” Linehan hoped the next year embodied the strong and energetic qualities of a horse, full of prosperity.
Michelle Wu, the first Asian female Boston city councilor-at-large wished the crowd a happy new year. Malden Mayor Gary Christenson, captured the crowd’s attention as he read his speech, composed entirely in Mandarin. And Lisa Wong, mayor of Fitchburg, reminded people that the most important thing is family. She asked for help wishing her grandmother, a late Chinatown resident, “Gong hei fat choi!” or good luck and prosperity.
The dances were full of color and energy as the lions jumped around the stage. Ultimately a lion tossed an orange, a symbol of prosperity, to a lucky young member in the crowd. Of the six acts, one featured Gund Kwok, the first all-women’s lion dance club, taking the stage with two bright yellow lions and their tamer. Recently recognized on NPR, Gund Kwok has expanded the Chinese tradition of martial arts here in Boston from a historically male-dominated sport.
Phuni Meston held her younger daughter and swayed to the beat of the drum to keep warm as the lion dancers performed. This is her younger daughter’s second Chinese New Year celebration. Her husband, Eddy, studied kung fu for more than two decades at the White Crane School, formally known as Woo Ching’s Bak Hok Pai, which performed at the event.
Meston said it was “so important to expose my daughters to kung fu to find balance in life and maintain a cultural connection” to their heritage. Having grown up in Taiwan, she saw much political strife; meanwhile, cultural traditions, dance and celebrations sustained the people throughout the years.
The cultural performances celebrated Chinese New Year, which officially began Jan. 31.
What a great crowd and a great time at North Quincy High School this past Sunday for the Quincy Lunar New Year Festival. Luckily, it didn’t snow that much the night before so the show was able to go on as planned.
It was a lot of fun. The GK lions along with the lions from Wah Lum Kung Fu Academy paraded down to the stage with the GK Dragon following.
Check out the parade and stage performance from a couple weeks ago — one day before our lion dancing marathon in Boston Chinatown. The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston is a beautiful space to perform in and the crowd & staff were amazing!
Oh lady, talk about a marathon session of lion dancing. After the lion and dragon stage performances, we were parading with two lions in the streets of Chinatown from 11AM until 4:30PM! Needless to say, some of us scheduled in some massages today 🙂
The GK Lions will be helping the Museum of Fine Arts usher in the Year of the Horse this coming Saturday, Feb 8th at 3PM!
It’s going to be a great event because guess what??? Admission is FREE! A lot of activities are planned like lantern-making, woodblock printing, Gong-Fu (a form of Chinese martial arts) and you can also meet Boston chef, and Flour bakery owner Joanne Chang at a book signing.