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Argyle Street Will Come Alive This Weekend For The Lunar New Year

dragon-1It’s not every day that you see a dragon in the 48th Ward. Then again, not every day is the start of the Lunar New Year.

This year’s parade and corresponding events honoring the Year of the Monkey will begin at 12:45 p.m. on Saturday on Argyle Street from Broadway to Kenmore, according to a press release from 48th Ward Alderman Harry Osterman’s office.

The monkey is one of 12 animals on the Chinese Zodiac. According to www.chinesezodiac.com, those born in the Year of the Monkey are curious, mischievous and clever, with a penchant for practical jokes.

The event, which concludes at 3 p.m., will also include lion dancers and a performance by the Rickover Naval Academy Band. Others supporting the event include Hip Sing Association, Uptown United, Uptown Business Partners and the Argyle business community.

“Even though it’s going to be in the single digits on Saturday, the procession will go on,” said Dan Luna, Osterman’s chief of staff.

“The plan is to close Argyle, (from) Winthrop to Broadway, starting at 11 a.m. Then, after the speeches (at 12:45 p.m.), we will walk on the south side of Argyle, on the new pavers, to Kenmore. (We) will cross at Kenmore and travel back west to Broadway. The cultural program will start, and the plan is to be off of the street by 3 p.m. at the latest.”

Other corresponding events will also take place in Uptown on Saturday.

Up for a 10-course, royal-style Chinese banquet while being entertained with traditional performances, including the lion dance? Then sit down for a meal at the South-East Asia Center’s Lunar New Year event starting at 11 a.m. on Saturday at Furama restaurant, 4936 N. Broadway. Reservations for the $25-per-person meal can be made by sending checks to the South-East Asia Center, 5120 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL, 60640, along with your contact information. For more information, call San O or Fanny Wong at 773-989-7433.

The Chinese Mutual Aid Association will also have its own celebration from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday at Harry S. Truman College, 1145 W. Wilson Ave. This event will include a traditional Chinese lunch and performances by CMAA youth groups. The CMAA is a community based 501(c)3 social services agency that serves low-income immigrants, refugees, and people from all socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds, age groups and abilities, the organization’s website said.

The Vietnamese Association of Illinois Tet celebration will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday at St. Andrew’s Greek Orthodox Church, 5649 N. Sheridan Road. It will include refreshments, cultural performances, live entertainment and more by local Vietnamese artists and musicians. For more information, call 773-728-3700.

Meanwhile, the ongoing construction along Argyle Street to create the first “shared street” is in a winter shutdown period. That project is near the site of the Lunar New Year celebration.

The project seeks to transform a three-block stretch of Argyle into a European-style plaza boulevard for simultaneous use by pedestrians, bicyclists and motor vehicles.

“The plan is to restart the project on/around April 1st, weather permitting,” Luna said, adding that the project will first finish the pavers on the south side from Kenmore to Sheridan. The street will be completed after that. The project should be finalized by July 4, he said.


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