The Year of the Pig came to El Dorado Park Saturday.
This marked the 27th year the Cambodian New Year celebration has been at the Long Beach park, said Monorom Neth, president of the Cambodian Coordinating Council.
“We’ll probably get more than 5,000 people here today,” Neth said. “It’s the biggest Cambodian festival in the country.”
That’s not surprising because Long Beach has more people of Cambodian descent than anywhere in the world outside of Cambodia.
Many of the visitors were wearing shirts emblazoned with an elegant pig.
“She’s a flying golden pig who can dance a conga line and do the limbo,” said Neth (tongue firmly in cheek.)
In Cambodian culture the animal of the year is usually female.
“We’re not sure when, but we expect her to fly in here for an appearance at some point,” Neth said. “But to tell you the truth, I’ve been so busy, she might have already been here.”
Neth counted 63 food, information and merchandise vendors at the event. And more than two dozen performers.
Does the flying pig have a name?
“That is one thing that I’m not sure of,” Neth said. “We should probably have one of the guests give her one.”
Ella Suos, 10, was one of the performers from Khmer Arts Academy.
The group performed several Cambodian dances. Her suggestion for a name was “Miss Piggelis.”
DJ Phat was running the soundboard at the performance stage. “I like Oinky Maiden,” he said.
Kuntha Kith was watching his children play with bubbles: “I think I’ve already seen her around here. Her name is Peacenik Piglet.”
Abraham Miranda decided to name her after himself: “I think Miranda would be a great name. I’m scared of pigs, though. If I see her coming, I’m running as fast as I can and hiding in the restroom.”
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