MIRA MESA – The annual San Diego Tết Festival celebrates another milestone this year — its 15th anniversary.
The festival started in 2006 at Qualcomm Stadium (now SDCCU Stadium), then moved to Balboa Park before finding a permanent home in Mira Mesa.
“For a youth-oriented organization that is continuing to go strong is a testament to our core mission — empowering youth,” VAYA president Dennis Duong said. “We have volunteers who started with us when they were in high school who are now in leadership positions helping to guide the next generation of Vietnamese American leaders.”
Tết, short for Tết Nguyên Đán, is the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, the most important holiday in Vietnamese culture. Tết celebrates the arrival of a new spring where families reunite, enjoy each other’s company, forget about the troubles of the previous year and look forward to a better upcoming year.
The festival itself has had quite a few accomplishments in its 15 years.
- It was the first large-scale, three-day Lunar New Year festival in San Diego County
- In 2013, it became the largest festival of its kind to not charge an admission fee.
- It was one of the first festivals to have its own dedicated app, developed by VAYA volunteers.
- It was recognized as the Third Best Festival in San Diego in 2017 by San Diego A-List
- It was recognized as one of San Diego favorites by the readers of the San Diego Union-Tribune several years running.
Some of the new attractions planned for this year include a new festival entrance gate, lanterns from Vietnam’s famed Hoi An region, and a few other surprises.
Festival Dates and Hours are: 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, Jan. 24, 2020; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, 2020; and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020. Admission is free.
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Vietnamese American Youth Alliance (V.A.Y.A), a 501(c)3 non-profit, non-partisan, community-based organization, was founded in 2004 as a mean for Vietnamese American youth to organize socially and culturally within the local communities.