Los Angeles's Christmas season, in the western U.S. state of California, kicked off with a roar on Sunday as life-sized dinosaurs from the "Dinosaurs in the Valley" live show rampaged down
Hosted by TV stars Eric Estrada and Laura McKenzie, and with actor and philanthropist Danny Trejo serving as the grand marshall, the parade celebrated its 90th anniversary this year.
It went all out, featuring giant balloons, floats, marching bands, vocal performers, international performers and the largest group of Chinese performers ever presented in its 90-year history.
The participating Chinese groups were organized by Roundtable of Southern California Chinese American Organizations with assistance from the Sino US Performing Arts Association and other leading Chinese organizations.
"It was an honor for us to participate in such an important American holiday festivity," Phoebe Chen Huang, chairwoman and spokesperson for Roundtable of Southern California Chinese American Organizations, told Xinhua.
Chinese performers included dazzling gold and crimson lion dancers, dragon dancers and leaping Kung Fu performers. Chinese history was well represented with gorgeous and colorful costumed performers and groups robed in stunning traditional costumes and Hanfu from different eras in Chinese history.
Zhu Yanyu, one of a score of Hanfu enthusiasts from the local Chinese community who took part in the parade, said the 90th anniversary of the Hollywood Christmas Parade was a splendid opportunity to help display Chinese culture to the American society.
"We went to all the dress rehearsals and spent hours together several times rehearsing before the parade," Zhu said, adding that she and other Hanfu performers want to enthrall the audience with their beautiful traditional Chinese garments.
Ethan Xing, director of operations at the Sino US Performing Arts Association, told Xinhua that "joyfully for sharing their proud cultural heritages, our Hanfu performers are sending holiday wishes to spectators and TV viewers across the United States."
Parade publicist Steve Moyer thinks of the parade as a "melting pot" that brings together groups from all over the world. The Chinese groups, he said, were "colorful" and "gorgeous."
"We have more than 180 Chinese performers this year, the largest ever," Moyer told Xinhua. "And what a spectacle they've created with their lion dancers, dragon dancers, Kung Fu performers, traditional costumes, and so many other interesting and colorful performers!"
McKenzie, the parade co-host, and author and Emmy-nominated TV Show host, told Xinhua that the parade means so much to the entire community. She has traveled extensively in China, including Shanghai, Beijing, Xi'an, and is thrilled that the parade is bringing global culture onboard. "We welcome groups from China and all over the world. It's wonderful to learn about other cultures and see their beautiful costumes."
Emma Sharratt, the head of the parade committee, told Xinhua, "It's fantastic that the Chinese and Chinese-American community really went all out this year to help us make our 90th anniversary the best that it could be."
Parade host Estrada told Xinhua, "The parade is a good all-around family event, especially with so many different cultures represented this year."
Zhang Ping, the Chinese consul general in Los Angeles, attended the festivities as a VIP guest, joining Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and other local officials.
"I am pleased that the Chinese community was able to participate in the parade where the performers made an excellent presentation of splendid Chinese culture. It's a good way to present the vigor and vitality of the Chinese community and a good way to promote cultural diversity, as well as the friendship between the Chinese and American people," he said.
"I hope there will be more of this kind of events that bring people of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds together," Zhang added.