2017 Year of the Rooster in Little Saigon

by J. Huynh on 01-08-2017 in General

2017 Year of the Rooster in Little Saigon

It seemed like 2016, Year of the Monkey, just flew by, but for many the end can not come any sooner. With just weeks left of the lunar year, 2016 certainly was a world changing year, but it's time to spank that monkey and make room for the rooster making its calling. The 2017 Year of the Rooster in coming Jan. 28, about 2 weeks earlier than last year.  As usual, you can expect celebrations of the Tet holiday in households throughout Little Saigon and in Asian communities all around the world. 

This year however, there will be no Tet festival in the Little Saigon area. The closest Tet festival will be the event by UVSA, the Union of Vietnamese Student Associations of Southern California, whom have hosted the event for over 35 years.  It will be held again this year at the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa about 10 minutes away from Little Saigon. The 3-day event was relocated there back in 2014 after contract disputes with city of Garden Grove.  This year it will be held starting the weekend from Jan. 27 - Jan. 29, 2017.

Last year a competing event was organized by the Vietnamese Community of Southern California at Mile Square Park in Fountain Valley, which was very convenient being right in Little Saigon.  The large event was free and had a great venue with carnival rides, games, performers, food vendors and more. Unfortunately the festival did not generate enough revenue to pay for the expenses and vendors.  Maybe having it free was a nice gesture but not a good idea from a money making standpoint. Most of the vendors have since been paid but plans are on hold for another festival this year. This gives a boost to  the UVSA event which has seen a drop in attendance over the years because of competing Tet events. 

It is a shame that there is no Tet festival in the largest Vietnamese community outside of Vietnam.  The annual Tet Parade will still be held on the streets of Bolsa on Saturday,  February 4, 2017 from 9am - 1am. This event will feature marching bands, floats, lion dances, color guards, veterans and youth organizations, martial arts, multi-culture traditional attires from diverse communities, elected officials, Vietnamese Scouting organizations, community organizations, and much more.  Hopefully next year, a Tet festival can be brought back to this  great community.