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Chinese festival marked
It is the time of the year when the moon is at its roundest and brightest and a huge festival is taking place in China to celebrate it.
The Chinese Moon Festival also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival is the second biggest festival of the Chinese calendar next to New Years and this year falls on September 19.
The festival signals the arrival of the annual harvest and was a time for the ancient Chinese to express their gratitude to the gods of both heaven and earth.
Several people gathered on September 7 in Parksville to celebrate the occasion and pay homage to the traditions and cultural heritage that are included in the moon festival.
Lloyd MacIlquham was one of the organizers of the Kite over Moon event at Parksville Community Park.
He said he planned the event as a fun way to promote Chinese culture.
“We wanted people here to experience some of the things millions of people do in China to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival. It is a time of getting together with family and close friends and is a major festival in China and Vietnam,” he explained.
Kites filled the air as did music for the event.
MacIlquham and his wife Swan also brought some Moon Cakes which are the traditional dessert of the Moon Festival and very much steeped in ancient Chinese tradition.
The Chinese are thought to have invented the kite over 2,500 years ago so there is a great tradition of kite making and kite flying in China.
MacIlquham said because kiting is an ancient Chinese art form they brought in special kites all the way from China for the event.
He said he would like to turn the event into an annual festival and hopes more people come out next year to celebrate the biggest moon of the calendar.