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Photo Story: Chinese New Year Festival and Parade in downtown San Francisco

By February 10, 2020 February 12th, 2020 No Comments
A parade-goer poses in front of a Year of the Rat float at the Southwest Airlines Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco on Saturday. (Samantha Laurey/ Bay City News)

A young boy anxiously waits on a cable car before the Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Young children dressed in costumes perform for the crowd along Kearny Street during the Chinese Year of the Rat celebration. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Three members of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) chat before the start of the Chinese New Year Parade on Saturday. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Spectators take in the sights and sounds of the Chinese New Year Parade along Kearny Street in San Francisco. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

State and San Francisco city officials and other dignitaries cruise in classic cars at the San Francisco Chinese New Year Parade. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Members of the West Coast Lion Dance Troupe perform during the annual Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Parade marchers in colorful costumes, and some on stilts, entertain spectators at the Chinese New Year Parade in downtown San Francisco. (Photo by Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Some members of the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo marching band practice before the start of the Chinese New Year Parade on Saturday. (Photo Samantha Laurey/Bay City News)

Thousands of people lined the streets of downtown San Francisco on Saturday night for the city’s annual Chinese New Year Parade. It was a festive celebration of the Year of the Rat with dragons, lion dancers, colorful floats, marching bands and plenty of fireworks. The parade started at Second and Market Street and snaked around Union Square and ended at Kearny Street and Columbus Avenue near Chinatown. Some spectators felt the crowd was smaller this year because of fears over the coronavirus. “The crowds have thinned out a lot this year and I believe it is surrounded by the fear of the coronavirus,” said Anna Leonhardt, a San Francisco resident who also attended last year’s celebration. Leonhardt says it was a lot easier to see the parade and to ride BART to the festival this year. Some parade-goers did take precautions by wearing face masks and there were more emergency personnel on hand around the parade route.