Marked by many of the city’s cultures, the Moon Festival is a “mid-autumn” festival that traditionally celebrates the harvest and hard work. In more modern times, it is a time for family gatherings, making and eating mooncakes (sweet pastries), lighting lanterns, and sharing cultures.
Activities provide the city with an opportunity to be welcoming and to celebrate its rich cultural diversity and for people to learn about cultures other than their own, Palmerston North City Library Multicultural Services Officer Jeremie Corroenne says.
The City Library will host many of the events during the week, which includes a Chinese Language Exhibition, as well as language, calligraphy and tai chi classes. The Manawatū Chinese Association will host a Moonfest Storytime (25 September), a Mooncake Making Workshop (28 September), and a Moon Festival Lantern and Movie Night (30 September) at its Napier Road hall. The week will wrap up with the Manawatū Chinese Association Dinner, on 4 October, at China Town Restaurant (reservations required).
A Chinese Language and Culture Show at the Globe planned for the week is now scheduled for 8 November, giving time for rehearsals outside of Covid-19 Level 2 gathering restrictions.
"The Moon Festival and Chinese Language Week are ways we can celebrate not only our Chinese community but also our people with cultural roots in countries such as Korea, Vietnam, Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia,” Corroenne says.
Mayor Grant Smith says the city’s celebration of Moon Festival and Chinese Language Week is an opportunity to show welcoming and togetherness.
“We know how important it is, especially during these Covid-19 times, to be supportive as a global community. The city’s links with China are strong, as we saw with our sister city Guiyang, which is in the Guizhou province, with whom we shared support, with them kindly sending us 10,000 masks for the city to use,” Smith says.
“I encourage the community to check out the festival and language week activities and learn more about the diverse cultures of our city.”
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Note: Moon Festival and Chinese Language Week activities may be subject to schedule changes because of Covid-19.