LILA celebrates arrival of Year of the Dragon

On Jan. 24, Lakes International Language Academy in Forest Lake ushered in the Chinese New Year with a celebration featuring an evening of songs, lion dances, traditional food, and cultural activities.

An estimated 1,800 people attended the all-community event that highlighted LILA’s Mandarin Chinese language learners.

Chinese tradition states that the Year of the Dragon is marked by excitement, unpredictability, exhilaration and intensity. People are said to respond to the spirit of the Dragon with energy, vitality and unbridled enthusiasm.

The LILA event’s strong attendance demonstrated this Dragon enthusiasm.

LILA Director Cam Hedlund said, “The turnout for this event has been tremendously satisfying. It’s a great example of LILA’s efforts to foster international-mindedness and lifelong learning. We’re so pleased at the community’s response.”

LILA is a public K-6 International Baccalaureate World School offering both Spanish and Mandarin Chinese immersion tracks tuition-free to area children.

LILA will host a school tour for interested families on Wednesday, Feb. 8 from 8:30-10 a.m. and open house sessions with free language lesson on Saturday, Feb. 11 from 10-11:30 a.m. and Saturday, Feb. 25 from 3-4:30 p.m.

Call 651-464-0771 to reserve a space. For more information, visit