It has been 20 years of Asia Pacific New Year Celebrations, and this year, the Asia Pacific Cultural Center (APCC) featured the Korean culture to kick off the festivities. This day-long event on Feb. 10 honored and celebrated the vibrant cultures of Asia and the Pacific Islands. More than 8,100 people attended.
The celebration opened with an exciting drum collaboration by different cultures, including Korea, Japan, Hawaii, Thailand, Guam, and Okinawa. Many dignitaries gave their congratulatory remarks, including Republic of Korean Consul General Lee Hyung-Jong, Congressman Derek Kilmer, Lt. Governor Cyrus Habib, State Auditor Pat McCarthy, Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier, and Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards. Washington State Supreme Court Justice Steven Gonzalez was the keynote speaker and Cheryl Lee, former Shoreline City Council member, was emcee.
Each year, APCC showcases a different host country or culture at the New Year Celebration, and the Korean Community of Washington was this year’s host and featured culture. Many groups representing Korea performed on the main stage. There was even a fun “flash-mob” performance of the well-known Korean Pop Gangnam Style dance.
In addition to the Korean performances, audiences saw a jam-packed schedule of dance, music, and demonstrations from Samoa, Guam, Indonesia, Hawaii, China, Philippines, Japan, India, Thailand, Taiwan, Cambodia, Fiji/Tonga, Laos, and Okinawa. Participants were able to visit over 100 booths, try crafts like Japanese origami and lantern-making, see a martial arts demonstration, and enjoy the tastes of delicious delicacies from a variety of Asia Pacific food booths.
PHOTOS BY SAM LE