- The Washington Times - Monday, February 10, 2003

Dragons, masquerading children, ladies in silken gowns and drummers beating more loudly than firecrackers celebrated the Chinese New Year yesterday.
People celebrating in Chinatown said this was the year of the sheep, which comes every 12 years.
Those born in years of the sheep are destined to be elegant, creative and timid with a preference for being anonymous.
"The Chinese New Year is like the American consolidation of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's," said Yemi Wong, of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association.
One of the thousands jammed into G Street between Sixth and Seventh streets NW was Lai Wah Lee, born in China 95 years ago.
A U.S. resident since 1987, she lives in the nearby 10-story Wah Luck House and planned to celebrate this new year by going to dinner at one of the nearby Chinese restaurants.
The parade filled with nearly three hours of romping, stomping and drumming ended when a string of firecrackers hanging from a crane nearly 10 stories high was ignited.
Smoke from the fireworks floated to the MCI Center more than a block away.
Wishes for a happy and prosperous new year were presented by D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams and City Council President Linda W. Cropp.
Similar wishes from President Bush and wife, Laura, were read by Betty Lam, community liaison for the White House.
Another speaker said President Bush had appointed 19 persons of Chinese descent to the government, more Chinese-Americans than all other presidents combined.
"Chinatown is a showcase of our culture," one speaker said, adding that more than 150,000 hardworking Chinese live and work in the District and its suburbs.
The biggest parade item was a multicolored serpent cloth hiding a dozen men who took up three-quarters of a block to weave a snakelike path.
Children of the Chinese Youth Club probably was among the smallest entries in the parade because just a few of the group's 150 members participated.
There was also a youth in a panda costume. Another was in a big brown dog suit. Three youths rode by on unicycles. A man juggled black-and-white bowling pins.
The U.S. and Chinese national anthems were sung.
Flags of both nations were carried by observers, and hung along G Street and behind the speakers' platform.
Several Kung Fu clubs participated in the parade, and they were joined by marchers from the Wong Chinese Boxing Association, the Tecro Chinese School, Falun Dafa and the Global Alliance for Democracy and Peace.
Coolidge High School majorettes and band members marked the end of the parade.

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