Red lanterns have brightened the winter landscape of the Depot Building in Lexington Center since February 5, part of the inaugural Lantern Festival sponsored by the Chinese American Association of Lexington (CAAL). The large lanterns on the front façade were removed Thursday; the small ones at the rear of the building will remain in place for the time being.
The festival is the culminating event of a three-part Lunar New Year Celebration Series that provides what Melanie Lin of CAAL calls “a full Lunar New Year experience” where visitors are immersed in the treasures of Asian culture.
This year’s celebration kicked off with a Chinese Painting and Calligraphy Exhibition presented by CAAL and LexArt. Part two was a cross-culture fair and gala performance with 200 entertainers at Cary Hall on January 22, Chinese New Year’s Day. Lin estimates that thousands attended the events which were staged thanks to the efforts of hundreds of volunteers.
Partner organizations for the series included Artisan Dance Academy (ADA), Korean American Organization of Lexington (KOLex), Lexington Historical Society, New Legacy Cultural Center and the Town of Lexington.