Thousands turn out in downtown Vancouver to celebrate Lunar New Year

The parade featured lion dances, marching bands and martial arts troupes.

Police expected up to 100,000 spectators to line streets this morning

Marchers make their way through Vancouver's Chinatown during the 2018 parade marking the Lunar New Year. (CBC)

Thousands turned out in Vancouver on Sunday morning to celebrate the Lunar New Year with a parade through the city's downtown. 

The 45th version of the event celebrates the Year of the Dog in the Chinese Lunar calendar. Organizers say the parade had 70 entries, with more than 3,000 participants from community and cultural groups, adding it's the largest assembly of traditional lion dance teams in Canada. 

Today's event featured lion dances, marching bands and martial arts troupes.

The Lunar New Year, which is celebrated in many Asian countries, follows the Lunisolar calendar and occurs on the first day of the lunar month.

In 2018, the Lunar New Year was on Feb. 16, with celebrations taking place for up to 15 days.

Dancers, dressed in ornate lion costumes, perform to bring good luck and fortune.