Calgary's Chinatown hopes for better fortunes in 2014
Business owners say some customers never returned after flood
Calgary's Chinatown is hoping the Year of the Horse brings better luck as businesses and community groups still try to recover from the flood.
The flood devastated most of the community in June, causing many stores to shut down. While many parts of the city are getting back on their feet, business owners there say courting customers hasn't been easy — but the spirit of Chinese New Year is helping.
"People are celebrating the New Year with us and it brings a very good spirit to Chinatown," said Anette Fung, who runs the Silver Dragon restaurant.
Fung is one of the lucky business owners, as her restaurant was only closed for one week.
Now, she says she's lucky to have many loyal customers back.
For others, the recovery has been more challenging.
"After the flood, things [became] even worse because a lot of the stores shut down," said Richard Poon, coordinator of the Chinatown Flood Rebuilding Project. "They kind of open — at least 30 per cent down compared to last year."
Seven months on, many are hoping all of their hard work will pay off in the new year.
In Chinese culture, the horse is considered good luck and signifies success and prosperity.