Parallel Parties

LA’s Chinatown and Alhambra celebrate Chinese New Year Saturday

The two biggest parties in the Los Angeles Chinese community will ring in the Year of the Pig on Saturday.

The main event is LA’s 120th annual Golden Dragon Parade and Festival. Presented by the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, the parade entertains thousands of attendees both along the parade route and watching on local television each year, making it the premiere cultural event in the Southern California Asian-American community.

Since the mid-1980s, the Golden Dragon Parade has expanded to include almost two dozen floats, multiple marching bands, various dignitaries, entertainers, local business leaders and cultural groups. The parade theme emphasizes ethnic diversity, Chinese culture and exposure to Chinese-American businesses, while remaining a rich and diverse experience for Angelenos of all ages and backgrounds.

The main event is the Golden Dragon Parade, which runs from 1 to 3 p.m. from Hill and Ord streets to Broadway and Cesar Chavez Avenue. Call (213) 617-0396 or visit lagoldendragonparade.com.

Alhambra hosts the largest San Gabriel Valley event with the Alhambra Lunar New Year Festival, also on Feb. 9, featuring more than 250 food and craft booths, lion dances, kung fu demonstrations and other performances across two stages. The event takes place on Valley Boulevard in Alhambra, between Almansor Street and Garfield Avenue. Visit  alhambralunarnewyear.com. 

All-American Classic

Azusa Pacific University Theatre Department presents Thornton Wilder’s ‘Our Town’

Acclaimed playwright Edward Albee once described Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town” as “the greatest American play ever written,” and Azusa Pacific University (APU) will demonstrate why he said that when it presents a production of the renowned work from Feb. 21 to March 3.

The story follows everyday happenings in the small town of Grover’s Corner. Narrated by a stage manager and performed with minimal props and sets, Wilder’s play is regarded as a priceless contribution to the American stage.

Purchasing tickets in advance is highly recommended. The production will be performed in the intimate 75-seat Black Box Theater. The facility is located on APU’s West Campus, in the Mary Hill Center. Free parking is available in Lot F. APU is located at 901 E. Alosta Ave., Azusa.

“Our Town” is recommended for ages 10 and up.

Tickets are $20 and $17 for seniors, APU students and alumni.

For more information, call (626) 815-5494 or visit apu.edu/theater.

Hungry as a Horse?

Santa Anita Park hosts chili cook-off Feb. 23

Santa Anita Park will host its Fourth Annual Chili Cook-Off on Feb. 23, featuring craft beers, wine, thrilling races and some of the most delicious chili recipes in Southern California.

Event sales will benefit the Foothill Unity Center, one of the San Gabriel Valley’s top food pantries.

The cook-off features a battle of the spiciest, best-tasting chili recipes in Southern California. Teams from all over are vying for attendee votes to call themselves the chili champs in this competition.

Admission packages are $20 through Feb. 8, and go up to $30 afterwards. They include 10 two-ounce containers of chili, including one audience choice vote for best chili, one craft beer or wine, a $5 betting voucher, club house admission, access to trackside seating, a racing program and a wagering tip sheet.

Santa Anita Park is located at 285 E. Huntington Drive, Arcadia. Call (626) 574-7223 or visit santaanita.com.