Held each year in the Greenwood neighborhood of Seattle, Sakya Monastery's Tibetan New Year celebration attracts many from outside the Tibetan community with its offerings of food and crafts.
Despite frigid temperatures and snow, the crowds turned out for the Sakya Monastery annual Tibetan New Year celebration, Losar. The crocuses were bravely sprouting in Seattle’s Greenwood Friendship Garden outside, but the true sunshine was just inside the doors in the form of H.E. Dagmo Kusho Sakya's homemade Tibetan hot sauce. There was a wonderful selection of books to browse through, too, for sale by Sakya volunteers.
Inside the main hall, all manner of Tibetan and Himalayan handicrafts were on display: colorful rugs, clothing, purses, malas, door hangings, bowls, scarves—a little Lhasa in the Northwest. The Monastery set up tables with food offerings and traditional Tibetan artwork, clothing, and personal items. Door prizes and raffles rounded out the mix.
The Tibetan Nuns Project returned again this year, offering information on their work to educate and support nuns and nunneries in India and Nepal from all Tibetan Buddhist lineages. TNP's fundraising effort includes sale of items made by the nuns, such as dharma wheels, kataks, bags, prayer flags, malas, dolls, and the ever-popular Tibetan Nuns Project calendar.
The Tibetan Nuns Project booth displays a variety of crafts and calendars.
The big hit of the afternoon was, of course, the wonderful Tibetan food. Lovingly made by Sakya members and eagerly anticipated by all, the tables were consistently full with happy visitors. Veggie momos! Long Life Rice! Tibetan cookies! Butter tea and more butter tea. The cooks outdid themselves this year.
Surrounded by beautiful art, meaningful organizations, and sharing good food and laughter with friends and neighbors--there was no better way to celebrate the New Year!
H.E. Dagmo Kusho Sakya, far left, with other dignitaries and supporters of Sakya monastery.