In the U.S., the Chinese New Year unfortunately takes a back seat to Valentine’s Day each year. Lucky for us, the Institute of Texan Cultures has given us a rain check. This Saturday, the Asian Festival will take over the institute’s grounds in a day-long celebration of the cultures of China, Japan, Korea, and beyond. The festivities begin with a lively parade that employs popping fireworks and crashing cymbals to chase away evil spirits. Once the coast is clear, the San Antonio Lion Dance Association takes the stage in elaborate two-person costumes. Indoor and outdoor presentations include Japanese Fencing and Sword Arts (1:30 and 3pm), Polynesian Fire Dancing (2pm), Lone Star Sumo Wrestling (1:30 and 4:30pm), as well as cooking, self-defense, music, and language demonstrations throughout the day. Oh, and if you’re over 21, you won’t want to miss the sake tasting — $5 extra, but likely to be money well spent. $4-$8 in advance at texancultures.com, $5-$10 at the gate, 10am-5pm, Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Durango, (210) 458-2300, texancultures.com
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