New Orleans is famous for Mardi Gras, jazz music, and delicious Creole cuisine, but the celebration of the Vietnamese New Year can’t be overlooked.
The Vietnamese New Year, or Tet Nguyen Dan, is a significant occasion in the Vietnamese community that is celebrated worldwide. Louisiana, and particularly New Orleans, has a vibrant Vietnamese community that hosts a colorful and festive celebration each year. In 2024, the Vietnamese New Year falls on 10 February, and New Orleans will be celebrated in style with parades, food, and entertainment.
The Tet Parade
The Tet parade is one of the most anticipated events of the Vietnamese New Year in New Orleans. The parade showcases colorful dragon and lion dances, traditional Vietnamese costumes, and vibrant floats. The parade starts at the intersection of Tulane Avenue and Carrollton Avenue, making its way through the streets of New Orleans’ East Bank. Visitors can join the parade or watch it along the route while enjoying the vibrant atmosphere and the stunning performances.
New Orleans is famous for it’s food. This festival features a wide array of Vietnamese food, including pho, banh mi, spring rolls, and other delicacies. And if you’re feeling adventurous, try the vietnamese sandwich, Banh Mi, it won’t disappoint.
Visitors and residents can sample authentic Vietnamese cuisine from various food vendors who offer a diverse range of flavors. The festival also hosts cooking demonstrations, offering an opportunity to learn more about Vietnamese cuisine and cooking techniques.
Cultural performances are another highlight of the Vietnamese New Year celebration. Visitors can enjoy traditional Vietnamese music, dancing, and martial arts performances. The performers showcase their talents on various stages throughout the festival, adding to the festive atmosphere. These performances offer a glimpse into the Vietnamese culture and arts and are a true delight to witness.
You can attend a traditional lion dance performance, martial arts demonstrations, and even participate in some friendly competitions – like the “lucky money” toss or making chè, vietnamese desert.
The street fair is an excellent opportunity to explore the Vietnamese culture through arts and crafts. Visitors can browse the various stalls selling Vietnamese handicrafts, clothing, and jewelry. The fair also hosts various traditional games and activities, such as pinwheel-making, calligraphy, and kite-flying.
One of the most colorful and symbolic traditions during Vietnamese New Year is the decoration of the home altars and cài chương or the little alters, which usually include photos of ancestors, fresh flowers, fruit, and other offerings. Visitors can purchase their own lucky tangerine trees to bring home for a fresh year of good luck.
The Vietnamese New Year celebration in New Orleans culminates in a fantastic fireworks display. Visitors and residents gather around to witness the stunning pyrotechnics light up the sky. The fireworks display symbolizes the beginning of a new year and is a perfect way to end the festive evening.
Whether you are a tourist or a local resident, this celebration is a must-visit, offering a unique and authentic experience. The parade, food festival, cultural performances, street fair, and fireworks display are just some of the highlights that visitors can enjoy.
Mark your calendar for 10 February, 2024.
Join at the Mary Queen of Vietnam Church for a delightful weekend filled with festivities! Here are the details:
Mary Queen of Vietnam Church
14001 Dwyer Blvd.
New Orleans, LA 70129
Event Dates and Hours:
- Friday, February 7th: 6:00 PM – 11:00 PM
- Saturday, February 8th: 10:00 AM – 11:00 PM
- Sunday, February 9th: 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM