Mid-Autumn Festival in San Francisco Bay Area, USA
The mid-autumn festival falls on the fifteenth day of the eighth lunar month in the traditional Chinese calendar. It celebrates the harvest and is an occasion for family gatherings and reunions. This year the festival falls on Sunday September 27, 2015.
Chinese people believe a full moon is a symbol of peace, prosperity and family reunion. One tradition is to visit relatives and business associates with gift boxes of moon cakes. Depending on the social standing of the recipient, the more important persons will receive lotus-paste filled moon cakes that have a larger number of preserved duck egg yolks. In Hong Kong, a box of four moon cakes may cost between US$30 to US$60. A long list of recipients could be a big burden on your wallet. So for many years, the Hong Kong moon cake bakers have offered installment payment plans. You sign up a year in advance and make monthly payments. At the beginning of the eighth lunar month you receive the promised assorted variety of moon cakes.
On the evening of the festival day, the extended family gets together for a reunion dinner. The family is likely to feast on seasonal delicacies such as Shanghai hairy crabs, lotus roots, taro and star fruits.
After dinner, many people will visit street fairs with friends and family. Younger children form their own mini parade with a variety of lanterns (probably battery powered these days) in the shape of bunnies, gold fish, colorful moons and many others shapes as they go round the neighborhood.
This year, the San Francisco Chinatown hosts an Autumn Moon festival on September 19th and 20th 2015. There will be a Dragon Dance and Lion Dance Parade as well as entertainment, food, shopping and cultural events and children’s activities. http://www.moonfestival.org/
Other cities like Cupertino, Saratoga and Fremont hold festivals around this time as well, check them out in your local community newspapers. http://www.saratogahistory.com/
This festival is a great opportunity for everyone to have a meal and share quality time together as a family. We would love the opportunity to assist you to find a travel companion for you or your family on your next family reunion trip.