“Cities have their charms, but it is in this small mountain village that you experience the traditional Chinese culture,” said the 25-year-old professional dancer. She spent this Spring Festival in Zhuquan Village in east China’s Shandong Province.這位25歲的職業舞蹈演員說: “城市有它自己的魅力，但只有在這個小山村，你才能體驗到中國傳統文化。”。她在中國東部山東省的竹泉村度過了春節。 “Zhuquan,” literally meaning “bamboos and streams” in Chinese, is a picturesque village with a history of over 400 years. Today, it boasts traditional cultural experiences that have attracted tourists from home and abroad.
Kvasha has been in China for three years, and each year she picks a different spot to spend Chinese New Year. “My friends recommended Zhuquan Village to me to experience the new year in a rural village,” she said.Kvasha 來中國已經三年了，每年她都會挑一個不同的地方過中國的新年。她說: “我的朋友們向我推薦了竹泉村，讓我在一個農村村莊里體驗新年。”。 A few years ago, it was rare for locals to see a foreigner in the village, but in recent years, foreign faces have become more common as tourism booms.幾年前，當地人很少在村里看到外國人，但近年來，隨著旅遊業的蓬勃發展，外國人的面孔變得越來越常見。 Kvasha was warmly greeted by locals when she arrived. On Chinese New Year’s Eve, she even received dumplings from villagers, traditional food that families make together on New Year’s Eve.
On Lichun, meaning the beginning of spring, the first solar term in the traditional Chinese calendar, Kvasha took a bite of a radish slice with the Chinese character for “spring” cut out in the middle. This ritual, called “Yaochun,” expresses the wish for everything to go smoothly.立春（春天的開始）的時候，Kvasha 咬了一口蘿蔔片，中間有一個漢字“春天”。這個儀式被稱為“咬春”，表達了一切順利的願望。 She also experienced many other cultural activities such as the Chinese dragon and lion dances, but the most impressive performance to her was the traditional local wedding ceremony.她還經歷了許多其他的文化活動，比如中國的舞龍舞獅，但最令她印象深刻的是當地的傳統婚禮儀式。 “The Chinese bride wore a red veil and the new couple had a tea ceremony to honor their parents,” Kvasha recalled, adding that it was her first time watching a ceremony so closely.Kvasha 回憶說: “中國新娘戴著紅色面紗，新婚夫婦舉行了一個茶道儀式來紀念他們的父母。”她補充說，這是她第一次如此近距離地觀看這個儀式。 The cultural experiences have made the village a tourism hotspot. It receives around 1.5 million visitors each year, while 80 percent of local households’ incomes rely on tourism.
During the Spring Festival of 2016, the village invited African performers to their traditional temple fair, who presented African dance along with local folk dance and other traditional performances.2016年春節期間，這個村莊邀請非洲表演者參加他們的傳統廟會，他們表演非洲舞蹈以及當地的民間舞蹈和其他傳統表演。 “That was my first time seeing foreigners and it was a wonderful combination of performances,” recalled 71-year-old local villager Fan Guangxi. “I hope we can have great shows each year.”71歲的當地村民範廣西回憶說: “那是我第一次看到外國人，這是一個精彩的表演組合。”。 “我希望我們每年都能有精彩的演出。”Fan said that the cultural activities have enriched their lives during the Chinese New Year.範說，春節期間的文化活動豐富了他們的生活。 “This is an unforgettable Spring Festival for me and I want to come next year,” said Kvasha, adding that she wants to learn how to make dumplings so that she can do it with the local villagers on Chinese New Year’s Eve.