Home Cultural Exploration Postcard: Chinese Lanterns

Postcard: Chinese Lanterns

written by Penny Sadler

You enter through a traditional Chinese red gate. Hanging overhead are hundreds of round, Chinese paper lanterns. Follow a trail through a peach tree orchard, and you see Pandas playing in a bamboo forest. As you continue down the path you feel as though you’ve entered another world. A world that is oceans away from Dallas, Texas.

The Chinese Lantern Festival is not at all what you expect. These lanterns are works of art, constructed of fabric and stretched over metal frames and lit from within. By day, they are colorful and playful characters from storybooks, and Chinese myths and legends. By night, they are spectacular sculptures lighting up the sky in a dramatic display of color and light.

These photographs were taken at The State Fair of Texas, October 2012.

An ancient Chinese tradition associated with many myths and legends, Chinese lantern festivals occur on the fifteenth day, of the first lunar month, of the new year. It is also called Yuan Xiao Festival after the filled rice balls that are a typical food, eaten at this time. There are games, dancing, and lantern puzzles to solve. In China, Chinese Lanterns Festival, celebrates harmony, family, and the Chinese New Year.

Chinese Lanterns @PennySadler 2012

Tianlu – mythological winged lion

chinese Lanterns at the State fair of Texas @PennySadler 2012

All materials copyright Penny Sadler 2012.

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Bright colors at the Chinese Lanterns Festival Dallas December 21, 2013 at 6:09 pm

[…] new lanterns plus an acrobatic show this year, and more vendors. I really enjoyed the festival last year and this year was even more impressive. They also added a nice peaceful musical soundtrack that I […]

The Barefoot Nomad November 1, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Wow, I felt like I was back in China! Great pics and if you haven’t been in China during a lantern festival then I suggest you book a ticket the first chance you get! 😉

Penny November 1, 2012 at 7:35 pm

Hey that’s a great compliment. Thank you! Yes I can imagine it’s something to see! The show here in Dallas is extended until 31st December this year!

Terri @ Travel 50 States with Kids October 22, 2012 at 7:47 am

Beautiful! You’re right–it doesn’t look like Texas.

Penny October 22, 2012 at 8:13 am

I think it would be a great event to do with kids. During the day they had Chinese crafts, music and dancing. Lots of kid friendly events. Of course the kids loved the lighted lanterns too.


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