It may not be known to some, but Riverside has a rich Asian-American history in its roots. This year to celebrate East Asian culture, Riverside will be hosting its 15th Annual Moon Festival at the Heritage House, Sept. 13.
The Moon Festival, also known as the mid-Autumn festival, is an East Asian celebration celebrated in Chinese culture. The celebration originated as a time to give worship to the moon during the eighth month of the lunar calendar, but in more modern times, it is used as a time for family gatherings.
“The Moon Festival to Chinese is a festival to celebrate family reunion,” said Sunny Wang, graduate kinesiology student.
Wang is a Chinese and remembers celebrating the Moon Festival in China as a child.
“Families get together and have moon cakes. In China we also do a lantern festival along with the Moon Festival so we have lanterns in the sky with the moon; it’s really pretty,” Wang said.
During the Moon Festival in Riverside, visitors to the Heritage House will be able to experience storytelling, crafts, games and the traditional moon cake. Guests will also have a chance to get a view of the moon through a high-powered telescope.
For those who have never experienced the Moon Festival or know nothing about it, they can visit the festival and leave with more knowledge of Chinese culture.
“I was born in Causeway Bay but moved here when I was very young,” said Charmaine Lee, Riverside resident. “I grew up around Chinese culture but I don’t know some traditions.”
Lee attended the 2018 Moon Festival at the Heritage House and said she learned a lot about her own culture.
“My family has always celebrated it, we even make moon cake every year, but I never really knew what it was about until I went to the Moon Festival last year,” Lee said.
For students who cannot attend the festival but would like to try the moon cakes, international students at CBU will serve moon cakes at the cultural cafe Sept. 17.
“We do a monthly cultural cafe in the international center,” said Daphne Kieling receptionist for the international students center. “We have international students cook and they get to highlight the different food from their cultures.”
Riverside’s 15th Annual Moon Festival will take place Friday, Sept. 13–6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Heritage House at 8193 Magnolia Ave.