7 Best Ways to Celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival
Mid-Autumn Festival (also known as Moon Festival) is celebrated on the 15th day of the eight month of the Chinese calendar (falling in September or early October).
1. Light Lanterns – Then carry them, hang them or float them down the river.
2. Erect an Altar – In honor of Chang’e and other deities, create an open-air altar facing the moon and burn some incense.
3. Eat Mooncakes (月饼yuè bǐng) and Pomelos (柚子yòu zǐ) – Pick up some mooncakes, pastries filled with sweet fillings (often lotus seed or red bean paste), and often containing cooked egg yolks to symbolize the moon. It’s also traditional to eat pomelos, a citrus fruit native to Southeast Asia, though many people also eat grapes because they’re in season. After you’ve finished your pomelo, put the rind on your head. The Chinese word for pomelo, youzi, is a homophone for words that mean “prayer for a son,” so putting the rind on your head signifies a prayer to Chang’e for the youth in the family.
4. Commune with Nature – Plant trees and collect dandelion leaves to distribute evenly among family members.
5. Dragon Dance – This one’s a little hard to do on your own, but keep your eyes peeled for gigantic dragon puppets undulating down the street. Dragons are good luck and represent power, dignity, fertility and wisdom.
6. Prepare a Feast – On Mid-Autumn Festival, most families get together for a big dinner. Cook your own using these traditional recipes.
7. Look at the moon!