Happy New Year

In China, New Year’s Eve is more than an evening of countdowns — it kicks off the longest, most important Chinese holiday of the year. Chinese New Year is a two-week celebration consisting of parades, festivals and fireworks. The West’s December 31 champagne binge and halfhearted resolutions pale in comparison. Get a taste of authentic Chinese New Year festivities from 5 to 9 tonight at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (4525 Oak). The gallery’s Chinese New Year Celebration offers dance, music, calligraphy demonstrations, and food inspired by its excellent Asian art collection. Highlights include the Shaolin Lohan Lion Dance Troupe, a Chinese costume fashion show and renowned dancer Lily Zhang Li Taylor. Call 816-751-1278 or see nelson-atkins.org.

Fri., Feb. 6, 5 p.m., 2009