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      Amarillo Asian community celebrate year of the snake

      Sunday afternoon, the Asian community in Amarillo welcomed 2013 with a traditional celebration.

      Every year the Asian community celebrates their new year on a different day, this year on February 10.

      Sunday marked 4,711 years according to the lunar calendar, and the year of the snake.

      The Chinese Zodiac consists of 12 animal signs, the snake means focus and discipline will be necessary for you to achieve what you set out to create.

      "It's the biggest celebration for the Asian community," said Kevin Liu Celebration Sponsor. "This is actually the year 4,711 in the Chinese calendar--the year of the snake."

      Liu compared the Asian New Year to Christmas in America. He said it is the most important holiday within the Asian community complete with family, friends, and giving.

      Just like the western calendar new year, it's out with the old, and in with the new.

      The traditional dragon dance is said to help them achieve this.

      "It brings in the new year by bringing good luck, prosperity, and wards off the evil spirits," said Liu.

      Also with every new year, come the memories of the Americans that helped them so long ago.

      "We just brought up the memories; 38 years ago the United States came over to our country and defended our freedom," said Steven Phan Community Member.

      Along with the continuous festivities, the Asian community recognized and thanked Vietnam veterans for their service, and also the Amarillo community for the constant support, they give.

      "The new year, we always remember back, who helped us, the mayor has support for our community in Amarillo, a lot," said Phan.