The Mid Autumn Festival is a harvest festival and holiday that takes place on the 15th day of the 8th month of the Lunar calendar. Predominately observed across Asian countries such as China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and many other ethnic Chinese communities.
While celebrating the autumn harvest as a whole is a focus of this time of year, depending on which Asian culture and country you are focusing on, you will find different cultural traditions and beliefs such as an emphasis on the moon, gathering with family, and even honoring those who have passed. Across all of these countries, the importance of gathering with family and loved ones can be seen.
Each country has its own name or reference for the Mid Autumn Festival, here are some of them (for additional viewing, please see the attached photo):
- 中秋节 (Zhōngqiū Jié) & 中秋節 (Jūng-chāu Jit) (Mandarin | Cantonese)
- Tết Trung Thu & The Children’s Festival (Vietnamese | Vietnam)
- 추석 / 한가위 (Chuseok / Hangawi) (Korean)
- 月見 (Tsukimi)(Japanese)
- Lantern Festival (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia) (note: Not the same as the Lantern Festival that takes place on the 15th day of the first month of the Lunar calendar)
- Moon Festival | Mooncake Festival (Hong Kong and also other Asian countries such as Thailand, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia)
During the Mid Autumn Festival, you will find many people eating and gifting Mooncakes, a pastry filled with different rich flavors such as red bean or lotus. You may also find crescent-shaped rice cakes called Songpyeon (Korean) filled with either red bean, chestnuts, or even toasted sesame seeds. Similar to other holidays across the world, food plays an important aspect to many during the Mid Autumn Festival.
To learn more about The Mid Autumn Festival across a couple of different cultures, check out the links below!
Angelina, our Assistant Director of The Mosaic: Center for Cultural Diversity wishes all a Happy Mid Autumn Festival, and from her own culture and language: 추석잘보내세요! (Happy Chuseok)!