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New York's Empire State Building lit up for Chinese New Year

(Xinhua)    14:54, February 18, 2015

NEW YORK, Feb. 17 -- The Empire State Building (ESB) in the U.S. city of New York was lit up Tuesday in red and yellow to ring in the Chinese Lunar New Year, or the Spring Festival, a traditional holiday to mark the beginning of a year in Chinese culture.

The lighting, to show the friendship between the United States and China, will continue on Wednesday, said ESB President Anthony Malkini at a lighting ceremony Tuesday.

Chinese Consul General in New York Zhang Qiyue presided over the lighting ceremony, pulling a light switch together with Malkini to illuminate the red and yellow lights of the building's model.

In the Chinese culture, the Year of the Sheep symbolizes harmony and good fortune, said Zhang. She said she wishes everybody have that and the year be one full of peace and harmony.

This year has seen increased people-to-people exchanges between the United States and China, she added, urging ESB to get prepared for more Chinese visitors since the two governments have agreed to extend the tourist and business visas from one year to 10 years.

The building is also commemorating the Year of the Sheep with a festive window exhibition with the theme of "san yang kai tai (three sheep bring bliss)." The saying implies the revival of life when spring returns and expectation for a fortunate and prosperous year.

Since 2001, with the support of the ESB management and the Chinese community in New York, an annual lighting ceremony has been put in place as a custom, which has attracted wide attention in the United States.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Du Mingming,Bianji)

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