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Spring Festival is the most important holiday of the Chinese Lunar Calendar and marks the beginning of the Lunar New Year. It is the most important and grandest traditional holiday in Chinese culture. Beijing has not only been the political and cultural centre of China since the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), but has also been a place where many different nationalities have always lived. Spring Festival in Beijing is full of rich and colorful long-standing customs.
Modern life in Beijing today is constantly changing and improving. Some of the traditional customs have gradually vanished; however, as a kind of life memories, the original taste and flavor which implies the authentic ideas of local people still take root in people's mind. Some classical and traditional local customs are still surviving from the past.
Traditional Chinese have always attached significant importance to the marital customs as it is regarded as one of the most important milestones in a person's life. The marriage ceremony represents a proud opportunity to provide a beautiful act for the bridegroom and bride. The scene is quite grand and there are many rich and colorful customs involved in the marriage ceremony.
The traditional festivities, called 'Zouhui' in Chinese, are traditional Chinese folk dances mainly performed around the time between the Spring Festival and the Lantern Festival. In Beijing, they are also called 'Xianghui' although after 1949 they came to be called 'Huahui'. Whenever there is to be a celebration or a grand ceremony such as for New Year and other festivals, 'Zouhui' will be organized and performed with great style and panache on the streets.
The temple fair, is similar to a rural bazaar, and is often held in combination with religious activities. It is a folk recreational activity and a combination of beer and skittles which is also considered as the carnival of Beijing.