Celebrating the Lunar New Year

By February 16, 2018January 14th, 2021Community Company Culture Employees

At IBX, there’s a strong commitment to recognizing and embracing diverse backgrounds and experiences. Our employees even form social groups (we call them Associate Resource Groups) dedicated to making sure everyone’s voices are heard.

The newest of our associate resource groups, imPACT (Pan Asians and Allies Collaborating Together), is raising awareness of the 2018 “Lunar New Year” observed on Friday, February 16.

Many Asian countries, including China, Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Mongolia, Tibet, and Singapore celebrate the Lunar New Year as a national holiday. The holiday can fall on a different day each year, but traditionally falls within January 20 and February 21.

The dates of celebration are similar because many countries in Asia interpret the lunar calendar the same way using the lunisolar Chinese calendar. In the Chinese zodiac, 2018 is the Year of the Dog. The dog is one of the 12-year cycle of animals which appear in the Chinese Zodiac related to the Chinese calendar.

Celebrations in the form of colorful street festivals traditionally begin on the first day of the Lunar New Year and end about two weeks later with the Lantern Festival. Like our New Year’s Day, the Lunar New Year is a day to gather with family members and friends.


“On Friday, we’ll eat some of the traditional foods that we love and that reminds me of how my family celebrates in Hawaii — noodles, dumplings, and oranges,” said Dana Yamate, Director of Market Research and Intelligence, and a core imPACT member. “My mom has already reminded me to make sure our house is clean and that we treat each other with kindness to set the right tone for the rest of the year.”

Kim Huynh, Senior Business Analyst, and also a core imPACT member, will begin the celebration on Lunar New Year’s Eve, February 15, with a hearty, Thanksgiving-like dinner with her entire family.

“Each dish will have a symbolic meaning,” explained Kim, who has family ties to China. “Our dinner will include fish for abundance; glutinous rice cake, which represents advancement; sweet rice balls, symbolic for unity; noodles for longevity; and fresh fruits, which represent life and new beginnings.”

On New Year’s Day, there will more dinner celebrations and get-togethers, and children and younger family members will pay their respects to their parents/elders by wishing them a happy and prosperous new year. “In exchange for their greeting, the children and youth receive a red envelope filled with money for good luck,” Kim added.

imPACT’s Mission

imPACT is focused on promoting visibility and awareness of Asian American Pacific Islanders within IBX and the communities we serve. Their mission is to engage and influence the internal and external Asian American and Pacific Islander community through programs and events focused on professional growth, health and wellness, and community involvement.

Share your Traditional Celebrations

Share your traditional celebration for Lunar New Year’s Day in the comments section below!


Kim Huynh

About Kim Huynh

Kim Huynh is a Sr. Business Analyst supporting the Government Markets department at Independence Blue Cross. She is a wife, dog owner, avid baker, and foodie. In her spare time she loves to travel to new places and visit as many countries and cities as possible.