CASA will hold a free event this Friday in the Ohio Union to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Credit: Courtesy of Francis Monk

In one of the largest Chinese New Year events at Ohio State, the Chinese American Student Association will raise awareness and celebrate Asian-American culture at its annual Lunar New Year Show, “Journey to the New Year 2019,” on Friday.

The show celebrates the Lunar New Year, also known as spring festival in China, marking the beginning of a new year, which is officially on Feb. 5.

Aimee Ho, a fourth-year in English and CASA president, said the group tries to bring the same energy to CASA’s Lunar New Year Show as China Central Television does with its New Year’s Gala Show.

“We want to emulate that celebrative atmosphere,” Ho said. “There will be many different performances such as dancing, singing, and martial arts from both other Asian student organizations and international Chinese student organizations on campus.”

Aside from performances, there will be giveaways, including an instant camera, two Google Home minis and a bluetooth speaker, at the event.

Ho said approximately 400 people attend the Lunar New Year Show every year, making it one of CASA’s most popular events.

Michelle Li, a third-year in accounting and vice president of CASA, said events like the Lunar New Year Show are great ways to raise awareness and promote diversity across campus.

“Stereotypes and such are so hard to break down, but normalizing cultural events and pushing them into the public eye is a way to naturally integrate diversity,” Li said.

Li said CASA is excited about more than Chinese New Year; it has many events throughout the year.

“We have many other lovely events, showcasing community, cultural celebration, and most importantly, food, all year round,” Shirley Wu, third-year in linguistics and CASA treasurer, said.

Wu said CASA’s other events include Shanghai Night, a collaboration with the Hong Kong Student Association and the Mid-Autumn Festival, a collaboration with other Asian, Pacific Islander, and Desi American-centered organizations at Ohio State.

The Lunar New Year Show and CASA itself isn’t just for Asian-Americans — all are welcome.

“CASA is a way for everyone to celebrate the Chinese culture in a fun, inclusive educational environment,” Jessica Huang, second-year in industrial and systems engineering and CASA club member, said.

The event is free and will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Friday in the Ohio Union Performance Hall.