We’re one day away and we can already feel the anticipation and excitement in the air! For the 5th Annual New Year in the Park Celebration, the planning committee has worked effortlessly to bring you the best of the best! We are excited to have greater representation of Southeast Asian communities than in previous years with a diverse range of cultural performances, unique food and merchandise vendors, and an added fashion show and papaya salad demonstration! We are also continuing our traditions of a new year parade and friendly sports, such as takraw matches and volleyball tournaments. New Year in the Park will be a memorable and fun event for all!
This festival is perfect for the entire family and there are activities for all ages. Here are some of our suggestions to navigate the festival:
For children under 12, we have a bouncy slide located near the volleyball field and our main performance tent. If you prefer something less physically active for your child, we also have an arts and craft booth. Time to get crafty and turn on your creativity!
For those 12 and over, volleyball and takraw matches will be starting at 10 am! What a better time to brush up or show off your techniques! If you aren’t into the sports, we have over 30 vendors that you can check out. From cultural food and merchandise vendors to nonprofits, local sponsors and city agencies, come connect with your community and learn what they have to offer!
Hop over to the Portland Parks and Recreation, Urban Forestry table throughout the day as they will be giving away tree seedlings and can tell you about their restorative work in Portland’s forestry. Several City of Portland Bureaus will be also be advertising great job opportunities too.
Next, you can shop the amazing Southeast Asian cultural artwork, gifts and souvenirs, traditional clothing and accessories that many vendors will be selling. See our vendors page for an updated list!
Cultural performances and traditional dances are planned throughout the day as well. See Khana Luke Larn Lao, Thai Association, Rose City Girls, and Thai Bumblebee perform at 11 am. Followed by performances by the Cambodian Dance Troupe of Oregon, Khana Luke Larn Lao, Cultivating the Hmong Traditions Dance Team, Cha Girls, and Kinnaly Lao Traditional Music & Dance Troupe right at 1 pm! Our final cultural performances will end with an appearance from Nang Sangkhan, Thingyan Moe, Portland Karen Youth Group, and the Burmese Doe Part Group at 2:40 pm. But wait! The music doesn’t stop here. We will also have a live Lao band playing music with an open dance floor until 6 pm!
And for the first time in New Year in the Park history, we will be hosting a papaya salad demonstration on stage at 12:30 pm and a fashion show right at 2:20 pm. Every Southeast Asian culture has its own take on papaya salad and you can see how different each one is right on stage. You may even be invited to taste the different variations! The fashion show will showcase beautiful cultural outfits from Cambodian, Lao, Thai, and Burmese communities. Come learn the significance of each attire!
We can’t mention everything going on but we have a lot of activities planned for our celebration! View our event schedule to see how our festival will pan out! Our New Year in the Park Celebration is going down TOMORROW at 9:30 am! Rain or shine, we hope you can join us for a day of fun, culture, and performances!
Please RSVP at our Facebook event here!