Members of Minnesota’s Asian community kick off Year of the Rabbit at Asia Mall

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Hundreds of people at the Asia Mall in Eden Prairie celebrated and learned about Asian culture Sunday as they kicked off the Lunar New Year.

The seven-day “Chinese New Year Celebration Week” was filled with dragon dancing, food and fun for the community.

“We don’t want to forget our heritage. We want to bring in our heritage,” said Chloe Lu from the Minnesota International Chinese School. “The more you know and understand, the more people will have the openness to understand each other.”

This weekend, a sea of red poured into the Asia Mall, bursting with culture to kick off the Year of the Rabbit.

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“We were able to try different food and the vendors that are around here,” said attendee Nam Le, who came with his family to celebrate the Lunar New Year.

Food deeply rooted in Asian culture was around every corner, while entertainment grabbed the attention of patrons.

“This is great. Minnesota normally doesn’t have something like this. I’m excited for more events to come,” said attendee Xuan Truong.

Community members told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS there’s power in positivity, and the Lunar New Year comes with well wishes and good thoughts for 2023.

One event did bring mixed emotions as the holiday passed this year. This weekend tragedy struck in California when a mass shooting happened at a Lunar New Year’s Eve party in a predominantly Asian community.

“Since it’s New Year’s Day, we need to put it in our heart and pray,” said Tracy Tran, Asian Mall co-owner. “We just got to put it behind us and then just keep going forward and think all the positive things.”