SF’s beloved event celebrating the Lunar New Year is being led by an A-list Hollywood start for 2024. The Chinese New Year Parade recently announced that award-winning actress Awkwafina will serve as this year’s Grand Marshal for the iconic parade celebrating the Year of the Dragon.
It’s such an honor to serve as Grand Marshal of the San Francisco Lunar New Year Parade! I’m so excited to celebrate with our community,” said the star on the Chinese New Year Festival and Parade’s website “Having been born in the year of the dragon, I look forward to fostering growth and progress that the upcoming year will bring for us.”
Awkwafina has an impressive resume, having roles in blockbuster hits such as Crazy Rich Asians, Ocean’s 8, The Little Mermaid, and many more. She is originally from Queens, New York, and currently lives in LA.
The Chinese New Year Parade has been a beloved tradition in San Francisco since it first started in the 1850s and is the largest celebration of its kind in the world. This year’s parade takes place on February 24th, starting at 5:15 pm. The parade includes over 100 units, and spectators can expect decorative floats, firecrackers, and beautiful costumes during the event. If you want to watch the parade sitting down and avoid the crowds, you can reserve a bleacher seat along the parade route; tickets typically range from $40 to $60.
There are many other beloved events celebrating the Lunar New Year in San Francisco, including A Miss Chinatowns Pageant, a flower market fair, a community street fair, and more.
How it all started
The Chinese New Year Parade has been ushering the new year in San Francisco for over 150 years. It initially started when Chinese immigrants decided to celebrate the Lunar New Year and showcase their culture by blending it with an American tradition to create the beloved parade we know today. In its early years, the parade was a local affair along Grant Ave until large crowds forced organizers to move to wider streets to accommodate the volume of people.