Universal Studios Celebrates Lunar New Year

A Mandarin speaking Transformer poses in front of the plaza greeting guests.

Monica Tamayo, PR Assistant

It is Lunar New Year at Universal Studios and they have taken to celebrate “Year of the Pig” in grand fashion from February 2 – 18.

The movie-based theme park celebrates Lunar New Year by featuring a variety of fun activities make their way to the heart of the par: the Universal Plaza. Within the Plaza, one enters the world of DreamWorks, “Kung Fu Panda.” The Plaza is adorned with traditional red Chinese lanterns and plum blossom wishing trees. Tables with red strips of paper stand next to every blossom tree. Guests are encouraged to write down their wishes for the new year and pin them on the wishing trees.

Throughout the Plaza, guests will discover the twelve zodiac animal signs. Each sign features one of characters from DreamWorks’ “Kung Fu Panda” along with their symbolic attributes.

The Lunar New Year features a Jade Palace performance stage based on “Kung Fu Panda”, which invites guests of all ages to engage in an energetic martial arts demonstration called “Kung Fu Academy”. The training begins with Master Po and his friends teaching guests the moves of the Furious Five. Towards the end of the demonstration, participants on stage receive headbands for performing their moves to the audience.

The Plaza also features another interactive experience called “Feng The Palace Artist’s Stand”. Here, guests learn how to draw the Dragon Warrior and the Furious Five as a keepsake souvenir.

Meet and greets are also available throughout the park. “Kung Fu Panda” star Masters Po and Tigress can be found inside the Universal Plaza taking pictures with guests and demonstrating their martial arts techniques.

Global pop icon Hello Kitty can be found near Universal Plaza dressed in Lunar New Year designed attire. Illumination Entertainment’s minion characters from the popular ride, Despicable Me Minion Mayhem, can be found around the park dressed in similar attire. Lastly, a 12-foot-tall Mandarin-speaking “Transformers” villain, Megatron, greets guests with real-time conversations as they take photos.

The Park also features savory dishes themed for the Lunar New Year. Back by popular demand, Mr. Ping’s Noodle Shop from “Kung Fu Panda” features Mr. Ping himself as he is ready to serve dishes including: Po’s Dumplings, Secret Ingredient Stir Fry Noodles and Oogway Egg Rolls. Outside the Plaza, guests can find desserts including: Ginger Cheesecake with fortune cookies, Green Tea Churros with white chocolate dip and Year of the Pig cookies. The festivities continue outside of the park, where a variety of Asian-inspired dishes are served on Universal City Walk. One of those specials is Voodoo Doughnut’s “Year of the Pig” inspired donut only found at City Walk.