Out & About: Saint Vincent College ushers in Chinese New Year

Updated 2 hours ago

Maybe we should reconsider the lowly image we have of the pig. That was one takeaway from the 2019 Chinese New Year Party at Saint Vincent College in Unity.

The event was held Feb. 5 in conjunction with the holiday that ushers in the Lunar New Year in China. This year is designated as the Year of the Pig. (In case you didn’t know, in Chinese astrology, each year in a 12-year cycle relates to a different Chinese zodiac animal.)

Americans often associate the word “pig” with greed, gluttony, dirt and other unattractive qualities, said event organizer Doreen Blandino . In China, the pig is associated with such things as wealth, good fortune, generosity, sincerity and kindness.

That’s one good reason for studying another language and another culture, she said — it opens the mind to other ways of thinking and living.

The celebration opened with a series of performances by Chinese language teachers and students from Valley School of Ligonier, Cardinal Maida Academy, Mountain View Elementary School, St. Joseph High School, Saint Vincent and Pitt-Greensburg. Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School students joined in via video.

The entertainment included song, dance, poetry reading and short plays.

Saint Vincent student Briana Huff and Pitt-Greensburg student Stephen Aulerich introduced the acts in both Chinese and English.

Afterward, attendees gathered for a buffet of Chinese-style foods, including noodles, rice, chicken, egg rolls, dumplings and almond cookies. Chinese cultural activities such as painting, paper-cutting, calligraphy and games also were available.

Joining Blandino in organizing the annual event were Tina Johnson and Chunhui Che . It was sponsored by the SVC James and Margaret Tseng Loe China Studies Center and the University of Pittsburgh Confucius Classroom at SVC.

Seen: Alec Barlock, Amy Jones-Barlock, Bill Barlock, Mark Morris, Richard Morris, Mary Beth McConahey with daughter Matilda, Bill Vana, Gertrude Tesar, Judd and Jennifer Dunbar, Bill and Glenda Dickson, Cheryl Wood, Carl and Kathy Bartolomucci, Chris and Christina Clawson with daughter Abigail and Brother Norman Hipps , president of Saint Vincent College.

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, smcmarlin@tribweb.com or via Twitter @shirley_trib.

From left, center: Garet Gicler, 7, of Washington Township and Beau Gourley, 8, of Vandergrift perform with other Cardinal Maida Academy students during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

From left, center: Garet Gicler, 7, of Washington Township and Beau Gourley, 8, of Vandergrift perform with other Cardinal Maida Academy students during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Saint Vincent College student Briana Huff of Phillipsburg, N.J., performs with other Saint Vincent College students, during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Saint Vincent College student Briana Huff of Phillipsburg, N.J., performs with other Saint Vincent College students, during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Harper Watson, a student at Mountain View Elementary School, performs “Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes,” during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Harper Watson, a student at Mountain View Elementary School, performs “Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes,” during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Saint Vincent College student Briana Huff of Phillipsburg, N.J., performs Feb. 5 during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township .

Saint Vincent College student Briana Huff of Phillipsburg, N.J., performs Feb. 5 during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township .

Angelina Bucci, a student at St. Joseph High School, dances Feb. 5 during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Angelina Bucci, a student at St. Joseph High School, dances Feb. 5 during the 2019 Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Nataly Smyntek (left), 10, and her sister, Kristy Smyntek, 6, of Unity Township, enjoy Chinese food using chopsticks, during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Nataly Smyntek (left), 10, and her sister, Kristy Smyntek, 6, of Unity Township, enjoy Chinese food using chopsticks, during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Pitt-Greensburg Chinese teacher Guo Sho (front) performs with fellow Chinese teachers from different area schools, during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Pitt-Greensburg Chinese teacher Guo Sho (front) performs with fellow Chinese teachers from different area schools, during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held Feb. 5 in the Performing Arts Center of the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Saint Vincent College students Lauren Serafi (left) of Wilkes-Barre and Meghan Zwickle of Pittsburgh pose for a photo Feb. 5 during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

Saint Vincent College students Lauren Serafi (left) of Wilkes-Barre and Meghan Zwickle of Pittsburgh pose for a photo Feb. 5 during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

From left: Event organizer Doreen Blandino, professor and director of the Modern and Classical Languages Department at Saint Vincent College; entertainment organizer Chunhui Che, visiting assistant professor, Modern & Classical Language at Saint Vincent; and Tina Phillips Johnson, associate professor of history and director of Chinese studies at Saint Vincent, gather for a photo Feb. 5 during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

From left: Event organizer Doreen Blandino, professor and director of the Modern and Classical Languages Department at Saint Vincent College; entertainment organizer Chunhui Che, visiting assistant professor, Modern & Classical Language at Saint Vincent; and Tina Phillips Johnson, associate professor of history and director of Chinese studies at Saint Vincent, gather for a photo Feb. 5 during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

From left: Shanshan Luan of Pittsburgh, a Saint Vincent College alumna, joins Brother Norman Hipps, O.S.B., president of Saint Vincent College, Brother Francis Jin, and seminary student Andrew Yan for a photo Feb. 5 during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.

From left: Shanshan Luan of Pittsburgh, a Saint Vincent College alumna, joins Brother Norman Hipps, O.S.B., president of Saint Vincent College, Brother Francis Jin, and seminary student Andrew Yan for a photo Feb. 5 during the Saint Vincent College Chinese New Year Party, held in the Robert S. Carey Student Center at Saint Vincent College in Unity Township.