School is back in session and my favorite season is upon us, Fall. I’m ready for all the pumpkins and fall decorations to come out of my closet and for the crisp, cool nights to take over. An important holiday in my culture also occurs during the fall, Mid-Autumn Moon Festival.
Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is a Chinese celebration that goes back centuries to when farmers would worship the moon and thank the moon and earth for the upcoming harvest season. This Thanksgiving-like holiday is celebrated by many countries and cultures all over Asia. This year, Mid-Autumn moon festival is September 21, 2021. In my family, Mid- Autumn Festival is a fun way to celebrate the fall season and embrace my culture.
My Family’s Mid-Autumn Moon Festival Traditions
- Eating Round Foods. We typically eat things like grapes, apples, or foods that are round to honor the moon.
- Traveling and Celebrating with Friends & Family. People all over Southeast Asia celebrate this fall holiday and many people travel and celebrate with friends and family. My family usually gets together for a big meal and we eat and celebrate as a family and enjoy the delicious treats that come with this holiday.
- Eating Mooncakes. This is my favorite part of the holiday. Mooncakes are round cakes with ornate decorations filled with a variety of fillings, like sesame, sweet potato, or fruit fillings. These cakes are usually only available during this holiday and are gifted by friends and family.
- Lanterns. They symbolize growth and light during this holiday. I remember decorating and placing lanterns in my house as a kid.
- Lion and Dragon Dances. I remember watching lion or dragon dances at local Chinese restaurants as a kid during Mid Autumn Moon festival. The lion and dragon are celebratory animals used in many celebrations in China and is always a fun way to celebrate the harvest.
- Shopping. Giving thanks for the harvest means shopping and enjoying the bounty of this time of year. Many families go out and buy new clothes and a variety of food.
How To Celebrate Mid-Autumn Moon Festival in Collin County
This September 17-19, Asia Times Square in Grand Prairie has an entire weekend full of activities dedicated in celebrating Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. There will be dragon and lion dances, food vendors, and a lantern parade. The weekend is dedicated to delicious food, dancing, and celebrating the coming autumn season.
Jeng Chi Restaurant in Richardson offers traditional handmade mooncakes. They offer dozens of filled mooncakes such as Lotus, Red Bean, Pineapple, Coconut, and the traditional Eggy-yolk Mooncake. This is a great place to eat when celebrating Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. FYI: the dumplings are a must-try and are also handmade.
Many Asian grocery stores and bakeries in DFW will also carry a variety of mooncakes:
- 99 Ranch Market (Carrollton, Plano and Frisco)
- Z Tao Marketplace 9 (Plano)
- 85 Degrees Bakery (Carrollton, Richardson and Frisco)
Fall is my favorite season; it is a season of change and I always try to look back at this season and remind myself and my family on how lucky and fortunate we are, and the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is the perfect way to do it!