The Year of the Ram in San Francisco

Welcome to the Chinese New Year of the Ram or Sheep, also called Lunar Year 4713. Our Gregorian calendar, the revision of the Julian calendar in 1582, only gets us to year 2015. This history reminds us that we are just a part of the continuum of time no matter who is counting.

San Francisco has been the host to the largest Chinese New Year celebration outside of China since the 1860s. Here is a rare clip of the parade on Grant Avenue in San Francisco’s Chinatown in 1940. This shows us the celebration before the United States entered World War 2 in 1941, and before the Chinese Communist Revolution in 1949:

In the 1960s, the Chinese New Year celebration made the news, but only after the serious news of the Vietnam War was covered. Here is San Francisco morning news anchor Bob Dunn, reporting from KGO-TV, on February 8, 1965:

In 1967, after San Francisco’s famous Human Be-In in January and before the Summer of Love beginning in June, the Chinese New Year that arrived was also the Year of the Ram. There are many new year traditions that have been followed through the years. Here is the History Channel’s primer on Chinese New Year traditions around the world:

San Francisco’s Chinese New Year Parade is Saturday March 7. For the details, check out:

Best wishes,