Bom Retiro celebrates Korean Lunar New Year

One of the most important holidays in Asian culture, the Lunar New Year was celebrated in São Paulo at the Centro Comercial do Bom Retiro, located at number 226 Rua José Paulino – where the Feira do Bom Retiro traditionally takes place – and brought together hundreds of people , who flocked to see performances by k-pop (a type of music pop koreana) or eat typical food at street stalls. The event also promoted typical games such as the jegichagia kind of shuttlecock, and the youa type of target shooting.

“The Lunar New Year starts tomorrow (22). And, in Korea, there is a specific tradition with ceremonies, greetings, people dressed in traditional clothes”, explained Camila Soares, event coordinator at the Bom Retiro fair. “Today we had different types of typical and traditional performances, showing how this works in Korea, how the Lunar New Year is celebrated: people gather with relatives, make a specific greeting, eat some specific types of food and play games,” he said. she, in an interview with Brazil Agency.

Teacher and dancer k-pop Josy Botelho, 42 years old, left Suzano (SP) to come to São Paulo to visit the fair this Saturday (21). She took advantage of the Lunar New Year celebrations to attend performances by k-pop and visit different stalls. “Today I came to visit the fair. I came with some friends to participate and be more inserted in this universe”, said she, who participates in a project of k-pop with a needy community of Guaianases, in the east zone of São Paulo. “I’m in love. I want to come back here more often,” she added.

Among the typical foods that were being sold in street stalls today, and that caused huge queues, was the tteokguk, a soup made from rice dumplings. “This soup is for prosperity. There’s even a Korean legend that says the more you eat the tteokgukthe more years of life you gain, the more prosperous you become”, explained Camila Soares.

This year, recalled Camila, the 60th anniversary of South Korean immigration to Brazil is also being celebrated. A series of events should take place throughout Brazil to celebrate the date, especially in the Bom Retiro region, which brings together a large Korean community. “The Korean community in Brazil is around 50,000 people. But here in Bom Retiro there are the largest number of Koreans. Here there are shopkeepers, people who work in the clothing trade, restaurants, cafes, Korean schools. The biggest and strongest community is concentrated here in the neighborhood,” she said.

Translated to english by RJ983

From Brazil, by EBC News