Santa Monica Place rings in the Year of the Pig with a spectacular celebration of arts and crafts

See traditional Korean fan dancers at Santa Monica Place

It hasn’t been long since we welcomed Baby New Year by popping champagne corks and planting kisses, but now it’s time to make room for the Year of the Pig. On Saturday, Santa Monica Place celebrates the Lunar New Year with an afternoon of comedy, song and dance.

Laugh Factory regular Paul “PK” Kim emcees a roster of entertainment that includes traditional Chinese Lion Dance, Korean fan dancing, a classical Chinese folk music duo and a short concert by Southern California-based K-pop dance crew First Bite. Keep an eye out for stilt walkers parading down the plaza throughout the event.

While the music and dancing starts at 2:30 p.m., the celebration actually begins a half-hour earlier with family friendly arts and crafts, a traditional dough artist demonstration and a balloon twister.

Bring positive thoughts into the universe at one of two donation-based wishing trees benefitting UCLA’s Chinese Students and Scholars Association, which promotes traditional Chinese culture by producing local events. Just write down your wish and attach it to the tree.

“The Lunar New Year holiday is meaningful to our local community and visitors,” says Santa Monica Place Senior Marketing Manager Stephanie Eglin. “This celebration brings the cultural traditions of the holiday to life, offering a great opportunity for the entire community to come together.”

— Matthew Rodriguez

The Lunar New Year celebration is from 2 to 6 p.m. Saturday (Feb. 16) in the central plaza of Santa Monica Place. Free. Visit for more information.