2011 a lucky Chinese New Year
Friday 7 January 2011
Cairns Regional Council and the Chinese community are joining forces to herald the first leaps and bounds of the Chinese New Year Street Festival, in the Year of the Rabbit.
Acting Mayor Alan Blake said the Chinese New Year officially begins February 3. Cairns Esplanade, however, will host the festival on Saturday, January 29 for "maximum weekend impact".
“Council has supplied the Cairns and District Chinese Association (CADCAI) this year with both financial and staff support. We consider this celebration to be one of the most significant on the 2011 multicultural events calendar,” Cr Blake said.
“The Chinese New Year festivities are colourful and lively and attract thousands of visitors from beyond our shores. Last year more than 10,000 visitors from China joined us in a celebration that recognises the importance of the Chinese community in the past and for the future of this region.”
Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree's executive officer, Doug Ryan, told The Newsport Daily that eight charter flights are confirmed to land in Cairns for the Chinese New Year, with a view of up to 11 making the journey.
He said that "a small percentage" of these visitors will make it to our area, particularly for day trips to the reef, rainforest, and the Port Douglas township.
Mr Ryan said retailers should be doing their best to welcome the growing number of Chinese tourists to Australia.
"Learn to say hello in Chinese or have a little sign in the window. It's the little things that make a difference. It's about looking after them while they're here," he said.
Cr Blake said the rabbit is a lucky sign according to Chinese astrology.
"Apparently the rabbit heralds a year in which you can catch your breath and calm your nerves. It is a time for negotiation, diplomacy and building good relationships with neighbours. These sound as if they are astute goals for developing the economic diversification in our community in the coming year,” she said.