BEIJING, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- People across China Sunday participated in activities to celebrate the Lantern Festival, which marks the first full moon of the Chinese Lunar New Year.
In Pingyao Town in north China's Shanxi province, people hung lanterns above their front doors and set off fireworks to celebrate the holiday, Xinhua reported.
"We traveled from Beijing to Pingyao, and experienced different atmospheres of Lantern Festival celebrations. Pingyao is livelier," said Sarah Brown, an Australian tourist. "It's easy to get separated from my friends in such busy streets.... we just learned the charm of the Chinese Lunar New Year."
In northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the Xinjiang Library prepared more than 1,000 Chinese puzzles and 300 puzzles for minority residents and also hosted charity performances and a bazaar to help people in need and the disabled.
In the central Henan province, city officials decided to forgo expensive firework displays in an effort to reduce air pollution and avoid smog.
"A half-hour fireworks show costs 700,000 yuan [$112,000]. It's a little bit regretful not watching the show, but it's more practical to use the money to improve people's lives, improve education in poor areas and build more public infrastructure," an Internet user named "Yinchuanlaoliu" commented on the Internet after learning that Yinchuan City, capital of northwest Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region canceled its fireworks show.
"It's worthwhile giving up fireworks for fresh air, and I believe citizens understand the cancellation," said Wang Dezhi, a Zhengzhou resident.