Photos: China welcomes the Year of the Monkey

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Performers take a part in a re-enactment of an ancient Qing Dynasty ceremony as the Lunar New Year of the Monkey is celebrated at Ditan Park (the Temple of Earth) in Beijing, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Damir Sagolj/Reuters

Performers take a part in a re-enactment of an ancient Qing Dynasty ceremony as the Lunar New Year of the Monkey is celebrated at Ditan Park (the Temple of Earth) in Beijing, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Damir Sagolj/Reuters

With fireworks crackling and incense burning, families celebrated the Chinese Lunar New Year on Monday by eating, dancing and cleaning house.

One of the customs of the New Year is to sweep away misfortune and make way for good luck. Revelers also decorated their windows and doors with intricate paper cut-outs and gave money as gifts.

Luckily, there was no confusion this year as to the kind of animal celebrated.

Traditional dancers perform the lion dance during the opening ceremony in Ditan Park at the beginning of Chinese Lunar New Year in Beijing, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Stringer/Reuters

Traditional dancers perform the lion dance during the opening ceremony in Ditan Park in Beijing, China’s capital. Photo by Stringer/Reuters

A man plays an instrument at a fair in the beginning of Chinese Lunar New Year at Huangsi Temple in Shenyang, Liaoning province, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Sheng Li/Reuters

A man plays an intricate instrument at a Lunar New Year’s celebration at Huangsi Temple in Shenyang, Liaoning province, China. Photo by Sheng Li/Reuters

Performers dance in costume at the beginning of Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations at Huangsi Temple in Shenyang, Liaoning province, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Sheng Li/Reuters

Performers dance in the traditional color of red at Huangsi Temple in Shenyang, China. Photo by Sheng Li/Reuters

A young performer dressed as a monkey attends a parade celebrating the first day of the Lunar New Year of the Monkey in Hong Kong, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Bobby Yip/Reuters

A young performer is dressed as a monkey for China’s first day of the Lunar New Year in Hong Kong on Feb. 8. Photo by Bobby Yip/Reuters

Dancers from the Shin Kotoni Tenburyujin in Japan take part in a parade in Hong Kong, China on Feb. 8 to celebrate the first day of the Lunar New Year of the Monkey. Photo by Bobby Yip/Reuters

Dancers from the Shin Kotoni Tenburyujin in Japan take part in a parade in Hong Kong. Photo by Bobby Yip/Reuters

A lion dance is performed during a parade celebrating the first day of the Lunar New Year of the Monkey in Hong Kong, China on Feb. 8. Photo by Bobby Yip/Reuters

A lion dance marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year. Photo by Bobby Yip/Reuters

People burn incense as they pray for good fortune at the beginning of the first day of Chinese Lunar New Year at Yuanmiaoguan temple in Huizhou, Guangdong province on Feb. 8. Photo by Stringer/Reuters

Burning incense is a New Year’s tradition at Yuanmiaoguan temple in Huizhou, Guangdong province. Photo by Stringer/Reuters

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