SEATTLE — The Wing Luke Museum in Seattle’s Chinatown International District held its annual Lunar New Year Fair on Saturday, to not only celebrate the holiday, but to bring the community healing and support in the wake of two mass shootings.
"This is our form of community healing, and not only that but a testament to our strength and our culture's unity, we're going to celebrate the year of the rabbit and the cat and we're going to do so proudly together," said Han Eckelberg, the education guide with the Wing Luke Museum.
Eckelberg said the two mass shootings in California this past week were heartbreaking, especially during a time when many communities come together to celebrate the Lunar New Year.
"It really makes me think that could've been my family, that could've been my sister, could've been my mother, could've been my grandma my Po Po, and you just can't help but feel such a personal connection with these tragedies," said Eckelberg.
The museum hosted its annual Lunar Near Year Fair Saturday to bring the community closer and provide a safe space. With extra security in place, a variety of family-friendly activities were available to spark what many have been yearning for after the recent tragedies.
"To feel a part of community, since I know many have probably felt so isolated with what has happened recently tragically and so we really wanted to make an effort to be out here and enjoy the community that's celebrating what should be a festive event for us," said Terrence Santos, who attended the event with his son.
Staff with the museum estimate about a thousand people attended Saturday’s event. They said this event is the first of many that will be happening throughout the year to continue to provide this resilient community with joy and healing.