Kung Hei Fat Choi! 恭喜發財!

January 27, 2017 | Suk Yin

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Whether it’s in Cantonese -- Kung Hei Fat Choy! -- or Mandarin -- Gong Xi Fa Cai! –- it means “Wishing you prosperity!” and is the popular lunar new year greeting for people of Chinese descent around the world.

TorStar Chinese New Year Andrew
Source: Toronto Star Archive, 1993


TorStar Chinese New Year - lion dance 1971
Source: Toronto Star Archive 1971

During the lunar New Year, Chinese families visit relatives and friends to exchange greetings and good wishes. It is also a time to rekindle friendships and renew connections.

To celebrate the Year of the Rooster, Toronto Public Library is offering a variety of Lunar New Year programs across the system. Toronto Reference Library caught the festive spirit early and, last December, our Chinese Canadian Archive facilitated a reunion of nine Torontonians who attended the Chinese Canadian Institute and graduated preschool together in 1945. They gathered at the library to reconnect for the first time in 71 years.

CCI Preschool 1945
Photo credit: Mavis Chu Lew Garland


CCI Preschool reunion 2016

They all are 76 years old now, all look amazingly young and all are sentimental about their Toronto childhood. There were hugs, cheers, laughter and lots of memories to share when they finally met again.

Preschool reuion 1


Preschool reunion 2

“It’s truly an historic event… and with Toronto Public Library establishing the Chinese Canadian Archive collection, where else could be a more appropriate place to host this reunion?” said Mavis Chu Lew Garland who helped coordinate the reunion.

Preschool reunion round table

Congratulations to the 1945 graduates from the Chinese Canadian Institute preschool class!

View the coverage by CTV News at Six here.