The Mid-Autumn Festival celebrated on the 15th day of the lunar calendar, is a traditional Vietnamese holiday and holds significant cultural value in many Asian countries. Let’s explore the cultural diversity of the Mid-Autumn Festival in different countries at the “Full Moon Festival” event organized by the International Schools of North America (SNA) Saigon South Campus!
1. Mid-Autumn Festival in Asian Countries
The Mid-Autumn Festival, celebrated on the 15th day of the lunar calendar, holds great cultural and symbolic significance in several Asian countries such as Vietnam, China, South Korea, Japan, and Thailand. Each country has its unique way of celebrating the festival with various exciting activities.
In Vietnam, the Mid-Autumn Festival is a time for family reunions and symbolizes love and togetherness. The traditional altar for offering to the moon during the festival includes five kinds of fruits representing the five elements of the Earth, as well as round or square mooncakes symbolizing abundance and the connection between heaven and earth. It’s an occasion for family members to gather, admire the moon, share delicious mooncakes, and participate in traditional activities such as breaking the piggy bank, lantern procession, and lion dance.
In China, the Mid-Autumn Festival is a time for family members to gather regardless of distance. On the night of the festival, they release lanterns on rivers and fly sky lanterns with wishes, hoping their aspirations will reach the sky. Mooncakes are an essential part of the festival’s culinary traditions in China.
In South Korea, the Mid-Autumn Festival is called “Chuseok”, also known as the harvest festival. It is one of the biggest traditional holidays for Koreans. Typically, families gather in the kitchen to enjoy traditional dishes such as “songpyeon”, a type of rice cake filled with sesame, beans, or chestnuts shaped like a half-moon, and sindoju, a traditional wine. Every morning during this period, families perform the tea ceremony called “charye”, expressing respect for their ancestors and seeking good fortune for the new year. In South Korea, traditional folk dances, wrestling, and visits to ancestral graves are also performed during the Mid-Autumn Festival.
2. Cultural Diversity In The “Full Moon Festival” Event At SNA
Intending to foster a united and culturally diverse community, the “Full Moon Festival” event provides an important opportunity for students at the International Schools of North America (SNA) Saigon South Campus to learn about and celebrate the diversity of traditional festivals among different ethnic groups, Asian countries, and around the world.
The “Full Moon Festival” event at SNA includes a series of engaging activities and performances involving teachers and students, showcasing diverse traditions and customs related to the festival. Certain activities cannot be missed at the event, such as:
- Traditional drum performance to kick off the event.
- Student performances
- Traditional Lion Dance and Lantern Parade
- Visiting nearly 10 Mid-Autumn stalls, representing the cultural diversity of various countries.
One of the highlights of the event will be the Lantern Parade. The vibrant colors of the lanterns, the rhythmic beat of the drums, and the familiar melodies of the song “Rước đèn ông sao sao năm cánh tươi màu…” create a festive atmosphere full of meaning and tradition. Moreover, there will be a series of stalls prepared by teachers and students from different countries, showcasing their cultural interpretations of this traditional festival and fostering a sense of unity within the school community.
Event details for the “Full Moon Festival”:
- Time: 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM, Friday, September 29th, 2023.
- Venue: Gymnasium, International Schools of North America (SNA) – Street No. 20, Him Lam Residential Area, Binh Chanh District, Ho Chi Minh City.
The “Full Moon Festival” event is an opportunity for students and parents to come together and experience the beauty of cultural diversity within the school community during this festive occasion. It is also a chance for students to appreciate the values associated with the Mid-Autumn Festival and create lasting memories with friends and family.
(Reference source: “How do Asian countries celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival?”, Ethnicity and Development Newspaper, https://baodantoc.vn/cac-nuoc-chau-a-don-tet-trung-thu -nhu-the-nao-1662461709611.htm.
“What do you know about Moon cakes and the many flavors of Mid-Autumn Festival around the world?”, VTV News electronic newspaper, https://vtv.vn/the-gioi/muon-ve-tet-trung-thu-20210919151800796 .htm)