U.S.

When is the 2019 Chinese New Year? How to Celebrate the Year of the Pig

The Chinese New Year, 2019 version, starts on February 5 and runs until February 19. Officially, it will be the Year of the Pig, according the Chinese 12-year animal zodiac cycle.

Unlike the universal New Year, the Chinese honor the Chinese New Year on different dates each year. The Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival in modern China, when folks honor their ancestors, their homes, heavenly deities and feast like there’s no tomorrow.

The Chinese New Year, often alive with noise-inducing banging of pots and pans, parades and dragon blessings, follows the traditional Chinese calendar rather than the Gregorian calendar that Americans follow. 

While some American towns, like Butte, Montana, celebrate the Chinese New Year annually with a rowdy, joyful, citizen-infused parade complete with a Mai Wah Museum dragon that blesses the door ways of local businesses, those whose birth year falls in Year of the Pig may want to be more cautious.

One motherhood website, Romper, regales the Year of the Pig in ways unexpected, in one twist of the Chinese folktale:

“Bacon-lovers, rejoice: According to the Chinese New Year website, 2019 will be the Year of the Pig, a symbol we haven't seen since 2007, since there are 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac. Legend has it that long ago, the Jade Emperor decided the order of the zodiac animals based on the order in which they arrived at his party. The Pig came dead last, because he overslept.”

Since each animal in the Chinese zodiac correspondents to a person’s birth year, the Year of the Pig doesn’t sound especially promising for those born in one of these years: 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007 and looking forward – 2019 and 2013.

People born under this specific sign tend to be kind, peaceful, resilient and generous, according to Feng Shui Web

However, despite the shining personal qualities assigned to Year of the Pig designees, the Chinese God of Age gets steamed during a zodiac year. According to Chinese Highlights, Tai Sui insists a person landing in his/her zodiac year attract bad luck. The purpose, per Chinese astrology, is for followers to pay special attention to their conduct every 12th year of their lives, during a birth year that matches their animal.

“In other words," writes Romper, “although a Pig year is thought to be fortunate for most people, particularly where money is concerned, it's not going to be so great for people born in previous Pig years."

“The Chinese New Year site cautioned that they should avoid conflicts and be prepared for some emotional roller-coastering. It's also not the best year for them to hit the casinos or switch careers.”

As 2018 and the Year of the Dog prepares to rest and 2019 ushers in the Year of the Pig, the Spring Festival in China celebrates family gatherings and hopes for good fortune in the upcoming year.

The Year of the Pig runs from the official start of the 2019 Chinese New Year – February 5 – through January 24, 2020. That’s nearly a full year of avoiding casinos or sticking to your current career – just to play it safe.

Editor's Pick