This year, Lunar New Year falls on Sunday (Jan. 22)
Happy New Year!
Lunar New Year, that is. In many parts of the world, today (Jan. 22) marks the start of a new year. Lunar New Year is celebrated widely throughout East Asia and marks the beginning of spring and the start of a new lunar cycle. The holiday typically falls on the second new moon after the winter solstice. For that reason, the date changes year to year compared to the fixed holidays of the Gregorian calendar, but it always falls in January or February.
This year, Lunar New Year marks the beginning of the Year of the Rabbit according to the Chinese zodiac, which assigns different animals to years over a 12-year cycle. According to ChineseNewYear.net(opens in new tab), the rabbit is associated with the moon in Chinese culture, perhaps because the shadows of the moon were once thought to represent a rabbit. China’s Yutu-2 rover, the longest-running lunar rover in history, gets its name from the Chinese characters for “jade rabbit.”
While the Western zodiac is based on constellations, the 12 animals that make up the Chinese zodiac do not correspond to groupings of stars. They instead originate from the animals found in the “Heavenly Gate Race(opens in new tab)” from ancient Chinese folklore and are assigned to 12 divisions of the (roughly) 12-year orbit(opens in new tab) of Jupiter.
The origins of Lunar New Year aren’t well known, as it is believed to date back to prehistory, according to TimeAndDate.com(opens in new tab). The date of Lunar New Year is set according to the Chinese calendar, which is based on the changing position of the sun in the sky and the phases of the moon.
Most years in this calendar system, known as a lunisolar calendar, are between 353 and 355 days long. (Leap years have between 383 and 385 days.) China uses the Gregorian calendar for most civil and governmental purposes, while the traditional Chinese calendar is used for holidays and festival dates.
The first lunisolar calendars in China were established during the Zhou dynasty (1046 BC – 256 BC). During this period, the beginning of the new year was set as the day of the last new moon that occurred prior to the winter solstice. As various dynasties rose and fell throughout Chinese history, the calendar was revised and rewritten until it evolved into the Chinese calendar we know today during the late Ming dynasty(opens in new tab) in the 17th century.
Today, Lunar New Year is celebrated worldwide with a variety of traditions. In China, families typically gather together for a 16-day celebration full of feasting, fireworks and gift-giving. Traditional gifts include hongbao, or “red envelopes,” which are typically stuffed with cash.
The holiday also sees the largest annual human migration(opens in new tab) on Earth, during which billions of people worldwide travel to their ancestral homes to celebrate with family.
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10 dead in shooting after Los Angeles-area Lunar New Year celebration
At least 10 people have died in a mass shooting following a Lunar New Year festival in a city east of Los Angeles, according to authorities.
The shooting in Monterey Park, California, occurred at a dance club and was reported around 10:22 p.m., the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said, after the Lunar New Year festival that was scheduled to end at 9 p.m. Police said the shooter was a male, but did not say whether he was still at large.
“Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide detectives are responding to assist Monterey Park Police Department with a shooting death investigation,” the department initially said in a short statement Sunday morning. “There are nine deceased. There is no additional information available at this time.”
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Capt. Andrew Meyer later updated the number of people killed and said that while the motive was unknown, police were investigating whether the shooting could have been racially motivated.
“We will look at every angle as far as whether it was a hate crime or not,” he told reporters at a press conference.
Meyer also said 10 other people were injured in the shooting. Their conditions range from stable to critical, he added.
Police also said that they were aware of another incident that has been reported in Alhambra, a town that neighbors Monterey Park, and they were investigating whether it was related to the mass shooting in Monterey Park.
Monterey Park is about 10 miles from downtown Los Angeles. It is a city of about 60,000 people with a large Asian population.
The Lunar New Year events in the city have drawn hundreds of thousands of visitors in the past years, according to the town’s website.
Sunday’s Lunar New Year events have been canceled in the city.
It is the fifth mass shooting this year, according to The Associated Press/USA Today database on mass killings in the U.S.
Ten dead in shooting after lunar new year festival near Los Angeles
Police say suspected gunman in incident at Monterey Park, which has large Asian population, is still at large
Ten people were killed and at least 10 others hospitalized in a mass shooting at a ballroom dance studio on Saturday night in a city close to Los Angeles. The mass shooting, one of California’s worst in recent memory, happened hours after a lunar new year festival that attracted thousands of revelers in the majority-Asian city.
A massive hunt is on for the suspected gunman, who fled the scene and “remains outstanding”, according to the Los Angeles county sheriff’s department. The sheriff department’s homicide bureau is being assisted by the FBI among other local law enforcement agencies.
The shooting took place around 10.20pm on Saturday in Monterey Park, a city of about 60,000 people located 7 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, where earlier in the day crowds had gathered to celebrate the eve of the lunar new year, a major holiday in many south-east Asian communities.
It was too early to say whether the massacre was racially motivated, according to Capitan Andrew Meyer of sheriff’s department, but he added: “We will look at every angle as far as whether it was a hate crime or not.”
Authorities have not released any details about the suspect or weapons or weapons, except that he is male and still at large. There were reports of “machine gun” fire.
The death toll could rise, with some of the injured people remain in critical condition, authorities said on Sunday. The second day of the festival, to mark the first day of the lunar year of the rabbit, has been canceled, authorities said.
Monterey Park’s population is around 65% Asian American and 27% Latino, according to census data. The city was the first on mainland US to have a majority of residents with Asian ancestry, as migrants from Taiwan, China, Japan and Vietnam settled in the community.
President Biden has been briefed by the US homeland security adviser on the shooting in Monterey Park, Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House spokeswoman, said on Twitter.
The dance studio in downtown Monterey Park where the shooting took place is home to an array of Asian-owned businesses, including restaurants and grocery stores.
Meyer said patrons ran from the club screaming and police rushed inside to try to apprehend the perpetrator as fire department officers treated the wounded.
Seung Won Choi, who owns the Clam House seafood barbecue restaurant across the street from where the shooting happened, told the Los Angeles Times three people rushed into his restaurant and told him to lock the door.
The people told Choi there was a shooter with a machine gun who had multiple rounds of ammunition on him so he could reload.
“Our hearts go out to those who lost loved ones tonight in our neighboring city, Monterey Park, where a mass shooting just occurred,” said Los Angeles City controller Kenneth Mejia, the first Asian American to hold citywide office.
California mass shooting leaves at least 10 dead, others injured at Lunar New Year festival; suspect at large
Authorities confirmed at least 10 dead in mass shooting at Lunar New Year festival in Monterey Park, California
A suspect remains at large after at least 10 people were killed and multiple others were injured in a mass shooting at a ballroom dance club in Monterey Park, California, late Saturday in an area where people were gathered to celebrate the Lunar New Year, authorities said.
Capt. Andrew Meyer from Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau confirmed early Sunday that 10 victims were pronounced dead at the scene, with 10 additional victims taken to local hospitals in various conditions ranging from stable to critical.
Meyer said the suspect, whom authorities earlier identified as a male, fled the scene after the shooting and remains on the loose. No description of the suspect was immediately available.
People were “pouring out of the location screaming” when officers arrived at the dance ballroom around 10:30 p.m., Meyer said, adding that officers entered the club as firefighters treated the wounded.
Meyer said no further information on the firearm used was available at this time. He said it’s too early in the investigation to know whether the gunman knew any of the victims or whether it was a hate crime.
He also said police were investigating another incident in the nearby city of Alhambra to see whether it was connected. No injuries were immediately reported in that incident.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre tweeted that the Homeland Security Advisor Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall has briefed President Biden on the mass shooting.
[Biden] “directed her to make sure that the FBI is providing full support to local authorities, and to update him regularly today as more details are known,” Jean-Pierre wrote.
A heavy police presence responded to the 120 block of West Garvey Avenue in Monterey Park, a city in Los Angeles County, according to photos and videos on Citizen, an app designed to allow residents to report crimes in their local area.
Several police vehicles were seen blocking an open area between a GBC International Bank and the TS Emporium, a Chinese grocery store. Entertainment venues, shopping, and dining locations lined W Garvey Avenue Saturday night.
The Monterey Park Fire Department told Fox News Digital a mass shooting took place, but could not confirm how many people may have been struck by gunfire. Monterey police have yet to release any information on the shooting, but said a news conference is scheduled for 7 a.m. PST.
Sgt. Bob Boese of the sheriff’s department had earlier confirmed to the Associated Press that the shooter is a male but did not reveal any other identifying information.
Officials said the Lunar festival scheduled to take place at Monterey Park later Sunday was canceled “out of an abundance of caution.”
Many people gathered in the city Saturday night for a Lunar New Year celebration of the “Year of the Rabbit.”
According to the Monterey Park city government website, the Lunar New Year festival features “vendors offering unique gifts and specialty items, food booths with various types of delectable items, amusement rides, and lots of live entertainment.”
The festival kicked off Saturday morning and featured “various types of entertainment,” the website added. And: “A carnival fun zone will be featured in parking lots at the corner of Garvey and Lincoln Avenues.”
“Past Lunar New Year events in Monterey Park have drawn crowds estimated at over 100,000 visitors per day from all over the Southern California area,” it also said.
Fox News Digital has reached out to the Monterey Park Police Department for additional information.
This is a developing story. Updates will be added as more information becomes available.
10 killed in Monterey Park mass shooting as Lunar New Year is celebrated
Ten people were killed and at least 10 others were injured Saturday night, Jan. 21, in a mass shooting in a Monterey Park ballroom as residents celebrated the Lunar New Year, and the shooter was at large, officials said.
It happened after a city Lunar New Year celebration of the “Year of the Rabbit” downtown. The shooting was reported at the ballroom at 122 W. Garvey Ave., near the intersection of Garvey and Garfield avenues.
A broadcast report said thousands of people had been attending the city event.
Later, police and emergency medical personnel were on scene as Monterey Park police investigated the ballroom business shooting. Witnesses remained gathered at the scene late Saturday and roads in the area were closed.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department homicide detectives were sent to the scene to assist. Nine people were killed, LASD reported around 2:50 a.m. Nearly an hour later, LASD Capt. Andrew Meyer said during a news conference that 10 people had died and at least 10 more were injured. Their conditions ranged from stable to critical, he said.
The shooting occurred at the ballroom about 10:20 p.m. and “appears to be” an isolated incident, Deputy Tracy Koerner said.
It occurred about an hour after the city Lunar New Year festival in the area had ended.
No suspect information was immediately available except that the shooter, who was at large, is a man. Meyer said investigators had no information on a motive for the shooting. “It’s too early in the investigation to know if this was a hate crime,” Meyer said.
He said officers responding to a shots-fired call at a business found people pouring out of the location “screaming.” Officers went inside and found additional victims.
Nearby agencies were assisting the Monterey Park police and fire departments. According to video from the scene and broadcast reports, El Monte and Alhambra police and South Pasadena fire personnel were on scene. FBI agents were seen there as well.
A second possibly related situation was being investigated in Alhambra, Meyer said.
A city of about 61,000 people according to Census statistics, Monterey Park is located east of Los Angeles and is sandwiched between the 10 and 60 freeways. About 65 percent of its residents are Asian and many would be celebrating Lunar New Year, which is the most important annual holiday in China.
Anyone with information about the shooting was encouraged to contact the Sheriff’s Department’s Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500. Information can be provided anonymously to “Crime Stoppers” by dialing (800) 222-TIPS (8477).
The second night of the city’s planned Lunar New Year celebration downtown, set for Sunday evening, was canceled after Saturday’s shooting.
Saturday’s shooting followed a handful of other high-profile mass or spree shootings in recent years in Southern California including:
–On May 15, 2022, at a Taiwanese church in Laguna Woods where David Wenwei Chou is accused of fatally shooting a doctor and injuring five other people.
–On March 31, 2021, at a real estate office in Orange that left four people dead and a woman injured. Suspect Aminadab Gaxiola Gonzalez ultimately was found not competent to stand trial.
–On Nov. 14, 2019, at Saugus High School that left two students dead.
–On Nov. 7, 2018, in Thousand Oaks where a gunman killed 12 people in the Borderline bar before killing himself. A Ventura County Sheriff’s deputy died during the law enforcement response to the shooting.
–A Dec. 2, 2015, terrorist attack that killed 14 people in San Bernardino.
This is a developing story. Check back for more information
Monterey Park: At Least 10 People Killed In Shooting Following Lunar New Year Celebration In California — Update
UPDATE: At least 10 people have been killed in a shooting late Saturday following a large Lunar New Year celebration in the east Los Angeles community of Monterey Park, police have confirmed.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said the shooting happened at a business on West Garvey Avenue in Monterey Park, and the gunman, who is male, is still at large.
According to multiple media reports, the shooting happened in Monterey Park just after 10 pm following a large Lunar New Year celebration festival, with one witness telling the LA Times that they believed the shooting happened at a local dance club.
LA City Controller Kenneth Mejia, an official in the local Los Angeles government, posted a tweet sharing condolences after the news broke.
“Our hearts go out to those who lost loved ones tonight in our neighboring city, Monterey Park, where a mass shooting just occurred,” he tweeted. “Monterey Park is home to one of the largest Asian communities in Los Angeles County, and many were out celebrating the Lunar New Year.”
Many details about the shooting remain unclear. A witness named Seung Won Choi, who owns a restaurant in the vicinity of the shooting, told the LA Times that three people “rushed” into his restaurant and told him to lock his door.
The newspaper continues to report that the people told Choi that there was a shooter with a machine gun and multiple rounds of ammunition in the area.
Earlier in the day, thousands of people had gathered in Monterey Park for the Lunar New Year festival. Saturday was the start of the two-day festival, and it is one of the largest Lunar New Year events in Southern California, AP reported.
The Monterey Park government website says that past Lunar New Year events in Monterey Park have “drawn crowds estimated at over 100,000 visitors per day from all over the Southern California area.”