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2021-02-19 10:48:52

People across China ushered in the Year of the Ox in a myriad of both traditional and unconventional ways. Some watched lion dances, set off fireworks, bought festive couplets for decoration, or made the journey home for long-awaited family reunions. To lower the risk of coronavirus outbreaks, others decided to stay put and celebrate in place, visiting nearby attractions or packing out local cinemas and smashing the holiday box office record. Everything seemed almost back to normal, except for the ever-present face mask.

An elderly man rides past a booth selling spring couplets in Foshan, Guangdong province, Feb. 6, 2021. Long Yilin/People Visual

An elderly man rides past a booth selling spring couplets in Foshan, Guangdong province, Feb. 6, 2021. Long Yilin/People Visual

A delivery man works on the first day of the lunar year in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. Many migrant workers chose to stay put in the cities this Lunar New Year holiday. Jiang Qiming/CNS/IC

A delivery man works on the first day of the lunar year in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. Many migrant workers chose to stay put in the cities this Lunar New Year holiday. Jiang Qiming/CNS/IC

Tourists visit the newest member of the Beijing Zoo’s panda family, “Bai Tian,” Beijing, Feb. 11, 2021. Niu Yungang/People Visual

Tourists visit the newest member of the Beijing Zoo’s panda family, “Bai Tian,” Beijing, Feb. 11, 2021. Niu Yungang/People Visual

People wearing face masks reach towards a team performing a traditional lion dance to mark the first day of the Lunar New Year at a park in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. Kevin Frayer/Getty Images/People Visual

People wearing face masks reach towards a team performing a traditional lion dance to mark the first day of the Lunar New Year at a park in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. Kevin Frayer/Getty Images/People Visual

A girl kisses a cow statue in Tunchang County, Hainan province, Feb. 16, 2021. Li Taotao/People Visual

A girl kisses a cow statue in Tunchang County, Hainan province, Feb. 16, 2021. Li Taotao/People Visual

A woman helps her husband put on a face mask properly on a homeward-bound train at a railway station in Shijiazhuang, Hebei province, Feb. 11, 2021. Zhai Yujia/CNS/People Visual

A woman helps her husband put on a face mask properly on a homeward-bound train at a railway station in Shijiazhuang, Hebei province, Feb. 11, 2021. Zhai Yujia/CNS/People Visual

Tourists experience an underwater sea walk in Sanya, Hainan province, Feb. 15, 2021. People Visual

Tourists experience an underwater sea walk in Sanya, Hainan province, Feb. 15, 2021. People Visual

Tourists at a ski resort in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, Feb. 13, 2021. Zhang Xiuke/People Visual

Tourists at a ski resort in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, Feb. 13, 2021. Zhang Xiuke/People Visual

Visitors crowd the Ancient Culture Street in Tianjin, Feb. 13, 2021. People Visual

Visitors crowd the Ancient Culture Street in Tianjin, Feb. 13, 2021. People Visual

A man in a god of wealth costume wears a holiday-themed face mask in Shanghai, Feb. 15, 2021. Yang Jianzheng/People Visual

A man in a god of wealth costume wears a holiday-themed face mask in Shanghai, Feb. 15, 2021. Yang Jianzheng/People Visual

People perform a fire dragon show in rural Deyang, Sichuan province, Feb. 7, 2021. People Visual

People perform a fire dragon show in rural Deyang, Sichuan province, Feb. 7, 2021. People Visual

People pray and burn joss sticks piously at a temple on the eve of the Lunar New Year in Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Feb. 11, 2021. People Visual

People pray and burn joss sticks piously at a temple on the eve of the Lunar New Year in Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Feb. 11, 2021. People Visual

People wear face masks as they enjoy an amusement ride on the first day of the Lunar New Year at a park in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. Kevin Frayer/Getty Images/People Visual

People wear face masks as they enjoy an amusement ride on the first day of the Lunar New Year at a park in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. Kevin Frayer/Getty Images/People Visual

Cinemagoers watch a film in Taiyuan, Shanxi province, Feb. 12, 2021. China’s box office for the 2021 Spring Festival reached over 7.5 billion yuan ($1.6 billion), smashing the holiday record. Zhang Yun/CNS/People Visual

Cinemagoers watch a film in Taiyuan, Shanxi province, Feb. 12, 2021. China’s box office for the 2021 Spring Festival reached over 7.5 billion yuan ($1.6 billion), smashing the holiday record. Zhang Yun/CNS/People Visual

A young woman in traditional Chinese “hanfu” clothing walks through the Palace Museum in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. People Visual

A young woman in traditional Chinese “hanfu” clothing walks through the Palace Museum in Beijing, Feb. 12, 2021. People Visual

Contributions: Daniel Wilkinson.