Your family can celebrate the Year of the Rat during the Chinese New Year Celebration at the Discovery Center on Sunday, Feb. 2 from 1 - 5 p.m.

It's a FREE afternoon of festivities and education. Learn, experience and participate in the traditions of the Lunar New Year. Explore Chinese culture through music, art and a theatrical production of the Chinese folktale The Mouse Bride. In addition, there will also be martial arts demonstrations, and your family can enjoy exploring the rest of the center, too.

ABOUT THE RAT

According to the Chinese zodiac, the rat is the first of all zodiac animals. A myth exists detailing the zodiac order. The Jade Emperor proclaimed that the decision of the order of the animals would be determined by the order in which the animals arrived to his party. So, a race was on. The rat tricked an ox into giving him a ride, and prior to the finish line, the wise rat jumped off the ox and made his way ahead becoming the first arrival.

The rat is associated with the Tzu Earthly Branch and midnight hours. In the realm of yin and yang, the rat is yang representing the start of a new day. Furthermore, rats are seen as signs of wealth and surplus in Chinese culture.

The Discovery Center is located at 502 S.E. Broad St., Murfreesboro. Call 615-890-2300 or visit explorethedc.org for more info.