X2's Kelly Hu Throws a Party
updated 12/03/2004 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 12/03/2004 AT 01:00 AM EST
Hu forgoes the Chinese custom of cleaning the house before the festival starts on the first day of the new moon in the lunar new year, but her mom still gives her lai-see, a bright-red envelope of money that is handed out to children and single adults for luck. And Hu still loves watching the lion and dragon dances. Accompanied by fireworks and loud music, the dances are said to repel evil spirits.
Mostly, though, Hu's celebrations are "all about the food," such as long noodles (for long life) and snails. "The feast symbolizes having food on your table all year long," she says. "I feel like it's my responsibility to celebrate Chinese New Year every year so I can introduce more and more people to it."