Yesterday marked the beginning of the Year of the Sheep/Goat/Ram and there have been celebrations going on all over the Los Angeles for the past couple of weeks, with most wrapping up this weekend. On Tuesday, the Korean Cultural Center of Los Angeles cancelled classes and hosted an event to ring in the new year. This was my first time attending a Korean even for Lunar New Year. That may seem odd in a city like Los Angeles, but 설날 (Seollal) is a time for family in Korean culture.
Just from watching TV, I learned that on Seollal Koreans visit family and pay respect to ancestors, play folk games and eat. The food is very important. Not only the food that is eaten by the family, but also the food prepared for the ancestral table. The first thing done on the morning of Seollal, placing the food on the ancestral table and eating ritual foods. We didn’t have an ancestral table at the Korean Cultural Center, but there was definitely food and games. I tried to get my kids to give me a deep bow, but they wanted money and I only had 67¢ on me. There were other interesting things we were told, but you can learn more about Seollal on Korea.net.
My family had a great time at the event. My son really liked the yutnori game. I can’t believe that after 3 years of trying to explain the game to him, he finally understood it within minutes. You can see our fun in the photos below: