Lunar New Year celebrations and events are happening again this year in San Francisco after two challenging years of the pandemic.
The flower market fair is underway this weekend.
A small procession headed down Grant Avenue Saturday morning, near the Chinatown Kite Shop.
Local owners are hoping Lunar New Year festivities will be a boost and that COVID-19 cases keep dropping after the omicron surge.
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For a while now, pandemic related closures and impacts have been tough on businesses in Chinatown.
“It was very hard. We were closed for almost half a year grant avenue is primarily for tourist,” said Albert Chang, Chinatown Kite Shop.
City leaders and law enforcement were on hand with the flower market fair underway this weekend.
“Booths were basically selling anything from lucky decorations to flowers to fruits to anything to decorate and prepare the home for Chinese New Year,” said Chang.
William Gee coordinates for the Chinese New Year parade, it’s set to return after covid cancelled it last year. Other events are back too.
“We’re grateful that we’re partnering with the City of San Francisco to allow us to actually open this event to bring back tourism to Chinatown,” he said.
Gee believes turn out today was better than expected and says safety remains a priority.
“We are still under a pandemic, so we are trying to deliver this event as healthy and safely as possible,” he said. “All of our volunteers all of our staff workers all the booth workers have asked to be fully vaccinated and verified and wear a mask.”
Visitors on Saturday were glad to support.
“It’s such a great way for the community to come together and really just enjoy this time of the year,” Grace Romeu said.