Listen: Heather Young, organizer for the Bok Kai Festival
California’s Oldest, Continuous Parade
And Weekend Of Activities Planned From February 24 -26
One of California’s oldest and continuous parade, the Bok Kai Parade, is back, and this year, it has expanded to include a weekend of activities and festivities for the entire family. While the featured event of the weekend is the 143rd Bok Kai Parade, held on Saturday, Feb. 25, from 11 am – 1 pm; other activities will include a 5K run, street dancing, lion dancers, and fireworks. Sunday, Feb. 26, will consist of a rib cook-off and car show, followed by the popular bomb day celebration that closes out the weekend. Throughout the weekend, children’s theater and special screenings of Pixar’s “Turning Red” movie will be available for kids.
“Bok Kai weekend will be the biggest and most festive ever. The Marysville community, the Marysville Chinese Community, and the Bok Kai Parade Committee have worked to organize a weekend filled with twelve events, including a 5K run, live music, food, and fireworks, to name a few,” said Heather Young, Member of the Marysville Chinese Community. “These inclusive events are free of charge and open to all. We hope to restore the annual Bok Kai Festival to its glory days and help local businesses in Marysville that are still trying to bounce back from the pandemic. It's a unique way to draw individuals together for a fun, historic, celebratory weekend."
The beautifully ornate Bok Kai parade started in the 1850s and is always held on the weekend nearest to the second day of the second month of the Lunar calendar. The central deity, Bok Eye, is the Chinese Water God, who protects Marysville from flooding. This year’s event will bring thousands of people to Marysville from all over California and surrounding states.
Marysville’s historic Bok Kai Temple inspired Pixar’s animated "Turning Red" movie. The movie has since been nominated for several awards, such as Best Animated Feature Film at the 80th Golden Globe and 95th Academy Awards. Turning Red’s production designer, Rona Liu, will be at the final screening on Sunday, Feb. 26 for a Q&A with the audience.
The weekend of festivities is open to anyone at no charge. This year’s event will bring thousands of people to Marysville from all over California and surrounding states.
2023 Bok Kai Weekend Event Highlights:
Friday, Feb. 24, 2023
- Cruising into the Weekend (6:00 pm to 9:00 pm)
Saturday, Feb. 25, 2023
- Bok Kai 5K Run/Walk (8:00 am)
- Bok Kai Parade (11:00 am to 1:00 pm)
- Bok Kai Street Dance & Music Festival (1:00 pm to close)
- Pixar Movie, Turning Red, Screening (2:30 pm & 8:30 pm)
- Lion Dance Performance & Fireworks Show (Begins at 7:30 pm)
Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023
- Bok Kai Rib Cook Off (7:00 am to 1:00 pm) Judging at 12:00 pm
- Bok Kai Car Show (10:00 am to 3:00 pm)
- Pixar Movie, Turning Red, Screening, and Q&A with the movie’s production designer (1:30 pm)
- Bomb Day Celebration (4:00 pm)