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VIDEO & PHOTOS: MTA Celebrates Lunar New Year with Lion Dancers at Grand Central

Updated January 28, 2024 4:30 p.m.

Lion Dancers Perform at Grand Central Terminal, Grand Central Madison and Grand Central-42 St Subway Station

Transit is the Best Way to Travel to All Lunar New Year Festivities

OMNY Cards Distributed to Lion Dancers for Good Fortune

View Photos of Lion Dancers at Grand Central

View Video of Lion Dancers at Grand Central (with Interview)

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today joined New York City’s Chinese community in celebrating the Lunar New Year’s Year of the Dragon. Ahead of the new year, the Chinatown Community Young Lions dancers performed in Grand Central Terminal, Grand Central Madison and used OMNY to travel from the Grand Central-42 St subway station on Sunday, Jan. 28, bringing blessings and good fortune to riders.

“Mass transit connects people of all cultures throughout the region, and we’re excited to bring New Yorkers to all of this year’s Lunar New Year festivities,” said MTA Acting Chief Customer Officer Shanifah Rieara. “The MTA wishes everyone a happy and healthy new year – Gong Hei Fat Choy.”

The Chinatown Community Young Lions is a New York-based group whose mission for over 50 years has been to teach, preserve and share Asian culture and heritage among all youth who demonstrate the desire to learn and to celebrate their differences as individuals and marvel in the diversity that is New York City's Chinatown.  With 500 diverse members, the Young Lions also offer a range of youth programs in addition to teaching lion dancing.

"The Year of the Dragon will bring hope, wisdom and prosperity,” said Co-Founder of the Chinatown Community Young Lions Brian Tom. “The Chinatown Community Young Lions are excited to celebrate the Lunar Year with the MTA and Asian community.”

One Lunar New Year tradition is to give “lucky money” (“lai see”) to the lion. In recognition of that practice, the MTA distributed OMNY cards and value to the lion dancers.

MTA Away, a helpful resource which offers guides and deals for travel by subway, bus, and commuter rail to all customers, assembled a guide outlining events across the city to attend using public transportation during Lunar New Year celebrations. Visit MTAAway.com for more information.

The MTA is the best way to travel throughout the metropolitan area to get to all the exciting celebrations this Lunar New Year. From Grand Central-42 St, riders can tap with OMNY to take the  to Canal St or the  to Flushing-Main St. Grand Central Madison brings riders to Flushing via the Long Island Rail Road.