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NACA 2014 Christmas Party

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For most people attending a Christmas gathering, they would expect nothing more than a beautifully decorated Christmas tree, piles of gifts and wonderful conversations with families and friends who they don’t see often during the year.

DSC_0417_tn_tnA Christmas party recently thrown at a private residence in Dunwoody, however, might haven’t surprised its guests by providing Karaoke and serving authentic Chinese food and dim sum from a well-renowned caterer in Atlanta Chinatown.

On December 13th, more than 80 people came to the Christmas party of National Association of Chinese Americans (NACA) hosted at its current Chair Lani Wong’s house. Dedicated to serving the local Chinese community and promoting US-China business and cultural exchange, the Atlanta chapter of NACA will be celebrating its 35th anniversary in 2015.

DSC_0414_tn_tnAs the landscape of the country’s diversity evolves, the guests at NACA’s Christmas party also reflect the changes taking place in the Chinese community in Atlanta. Guests varied from senior management professionals in corporate America and the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, to a first generation immigrant who has established his business flagship in biodegradable material industry, to students and a young working professional who just came to the United States for four months. Over the recent decades, more and more Chinese came to this country to pursue higher education or conduct business, with an awareness of honoring their cultural identity and taking advantage of the economic momentum of their country. In the “Salad Bowl”, a cultural concept replacing “melting pot”, new immigrants have benefited from recognizing their cultural heritage and sharing it with the broader community.

DSC_0443_tn_tnAt this home far away from their own country, the Chinese guests enjoyed meeting friends within and outside of their community. They exchanged ideas of doing business in the country, advancing their careers, building a quality life, surviving graduate school, etc. “The older I became, the more I resonate with my roots, the Chinese culture”, said Danny Pian, a long time NACA member. Maybe this explains why you would find NACA members of 15 years still coming back to the gathering. For the non-Chinese guests, some of them found the party a great opportunity to gain information or establish further relationships with the country they conduct business with; others appreciate celebrating the traditional holiday with their Chinese spouse.

DSC_0451_tn_tnToward the end of the evening all the guests gathered in the game room to participate in the gift drawing. Besides the presents given out from the “Chinese Santa”, we were able to recognize long stannding NACA members, welcome all the newcomers to Atlanta, thank dedicated community leaders present, recognize NACA Board members, congratulate Lesley (a 24 year old member who attributed the successful launching of his start-up to Lani Wong’s help), and identify the most handsome male guest present (identified as Al). This was truly a wonderful, fun, and very festive Christmas party as good as any party anywhere!

Because of the large number of new young members joining NACA expects to go into 2015 with a strong momentum (and we will also be looking for a successor to take over Al’s title).

全美华人协会2014年圣诞派对

圣诞来临,新年将至。对亚特兰大的华人同胞来说,在装饰一新的圣诞树下,欢聚一堂,同许久未见的亲朋好友抒怀谈心,无疑是节日里值得期盼的活动。

DSC_0429_tn_tn12 月13号,全美华人协会主席李秀兰女士在自己家中举办了2014年圣诞聚会。超过80名华人同胞和外国友人参加了此次活动。聚会准备了美味的中国食物,卡拉OK,以及现场抽奖,气氛非常热烈。

DSC_0408_tn_tn本次活动以“服务回馈社区,架构中美桥梁”为宗旨,意在为亚特兰大的华人同胞提供一个相互交流,共同进步的平台。
DSC_0434_tn_tn现如今,经济发展以及全球化为整个社会带来日新月异的改变。亚特兰大的华人群体也加入了新鲜血液,变得更有活力,更加多元。参加此次聚会的人员中,有亚特兰大商会的代表,有在生物降解材料领域成立了自己商业公司的第一代移民,有亚特兰大的留学生,还有刚来美国四个月的年轻创业者。

DSC_0412_tn_tn改革开放后,越来越多的中国人远渡重洋,来到美国,在这片土地上接受教育,奋斗事业。同时,随着中国经济的发展,海外华人对自身文化的认同感也更加强烈。“文化共存”理念取代了“文化融合”理念,新一代移民开始受益于中国独特的文化传统并将之与其他美国群体分享交流。

异国他乡,此次聚会让游子们感受到久违的亲切。在与老朋友互诉衷肠的同时,也认识了更多的新朋友。大家在一起畅谈理想,交流在美生活的方方面面,为新来的创业者和留学生提供真诚的建议和指导。

“随着年龄的增长,对中国文化反而愈发难以割舍了。就像自己的根。”全美华人协会的成员Danny Pian如是说道。这或许就是很多华协成员十五年如一日地参加聚会的原因。

DSC_0401_tn_tn聚会中也有不少外国朋友,有的是以中国家属的身份来感受中国文化与节日氛围,也有的将之作为一个很好的平台收集信息,建立关系,找寻商机。这也与全美华人协会“架构中美桥梁”的宗旨不谋而合。

聚会最后,客人们参加了李秀兰女士组织的抽奖活动。活动不仅将聚会的氛围带入高潮,也向参与者介绍了全美华人协会的新老成员,宣传骨干,以及社区代表,增进相互之间的交流认识。在亲切的氛围中,结束了本次聚会。

明年,是全美华人协会亚特兰大分会的第三十五个年头,随着年轻新成员的加入,全美华人协会将以更为朝气蓬勃的姿态迎接2015年的到来,为在美华人创造更多更高更好的平台。

English report by Lingman Guo 郭凌曼

Chinese report by Jiamu Chen 陈佳木

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