2018-02-21 / Front Page

Dromm Celebrates Tibetan New Year In Elmhurst

(L. to r.): NYC Council Member Daniel Dromm and United Sherpa Association President Urgen Sherpa pose in front of a shrine at the United Sherpa Association in Elmhurst.

 (L. to r.): NYC Council Member Daniel Dromm and United Sherpa Association President Urgen Sherpa pose in front of a shrine at the United Sherpa Association in Elmhurst. Council Member Daniel Dromm celebrated Losar (also called Tibetan New Year) at the United Sherpa Association in Elmhurst on February 16.

The holiday is a Tibetan Buddhist festival and is celebrated on the first day of the Tibetan calendar, which corresponds to a date in February or March in the Gregorian calendar.  Losar is celebrated for 15 days, with the main celebrations on the first three days.

Families prepare for Losar several days in advance by cleaning and decorating their homes with fragrant flowers and signs painted in flour. They also prepare cedar, rhododendron, and juniper branches for burning as incense. During this time of preparation, families settle their debts and put an end to interpersonal conflict. In addition, they purchase new clothes for the celebration and make special food such as kapse (fried twists) and chang (barley beer). Because the words “sheep’s head” and “beginning of the year” sound similar in Tibetan, it is customary to craft a sheep’s head from colored butter as a decoration.

“It is a pleasure to celebrate Losar with the United Sherpa Association,” said NYC Council Member Daniel Dromm (D-Elmhurst, Jackson Heights), who represents one of the most diverse districts in NYC. “It is an honor to participate in such a noble ancient tradition with my Tibetan constituents and their families. I wish them all a peaceful and prosperous Year of the Dog.”

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