EDITOR’S NOTE: Thank you so much Nelia for sharing this fun and wonderful cultural tradition and bringing it to Tillamook! Bring on the Year of the Tiger!
Photos & Story By Don Backman
Met this guy today on the sidewalk in Tillamook. I got out of his way as he didn’t look the type to be willing to stop.
In Chinese culture, the lion symbolizes power, wisdom, and superiority. People perform lion dances at Chinese festivals or big occasions to bring good fortune and chase away evil spirits.
The lion dance is one of the most important traditions at Chinese New Year. It is performed to bring prosperity and good luck for the upcoming year. The lion dance is also a way to create a festive atmosphere and bring happiness.
Chinese lion dances are performed by two “dancers” in a lion costume, rather like a pantomime horse. The performers become the body of the lion: the one in front is the head and front limbs, the one behind is the back and hind legs. Performers’ legs are dressed the same color as the lion’s body, and sometimes the costume extends to shoes the shape and color of the lion’s paws.