Chinatown to Observe the Moon Festival Sept. 29 and 30
Family-Oriented Event Dedicated to Victims of the Tragic Events of Sept. 11;
Donations to Be Collected to Support Relief Efforts
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Chinatown will observe the Moon Festival, one of the most important Chinese holidays, with two days of cultural entertainment and activities on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 29 and 30. But this year's festival will take on a different tone from previous years' celebrations, as the nation mourns the loss of American lives as a result of the terrorist acts on Sept. 11. Since the Moon Festival is traditionally a time to gather with family and be thankful for the bounty of the summer's harvest, organizers of this year's event, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Chinatown Business Improvement District, have pledged to support victim relief efforts by collecting donations. "While all Moon Festival activities are free, we will be accepting contributions from attendees," said George Yu, Interim Executive Director of the Chinatown Business Improvement District. "Many Chinatown businesses have already contributed to organizations providing aid to those affected by these tragedies, and we wanted to create another way for Chinatown to reach out to the families that are missing loved ones and have suffered great losses." The Moon Festival will commence at 2 p.m. on Saturday with opening ceremonies in historic Central Plaza, at 943 North Broadway. The ceremony will feature a traditional lion dance, which the Chinese use to ward off evil spirits, and a moment of silence for the victims. Then children from Los Angeles-area schools will participate in a lantern parade. Lanterns are a special tradition during this festival, as parents take children to high vantage points to light their lanterns and watch the moon rise. The lantern parade will begin at Central Plaza and conclude at the Chinese Historical Society's Heritage House at 415 Bernard. After the parade, the Heritage House will offer activities for children, including dragon-making crafts, story telling, and face painting. Cultural entertainment scheduled for both days on the main stage at Central Plaza includes Asian musical acts, Chinese acrobats, martial arts troupes and a feng shui seminar. On Sunday at 5 p.m., there will be a showcase of costumes from various Chinese imperial dynasties. Also planned for the main stage are demonstrations of the making of moon cakes. Every Chinese holiday is accompanied by a special food, and for the Moon Festival, moon cakes are eaten. These pastries are made with sweet fillings of nuts, mashed red beans, lotus-seed paste or Chinese dates. Sometimes an egg yolk, which represents the moon, can be found in the middle. The demonstrations will be held Saturday at 3:00 p.m. and Sunday at 3:30 p.m., and will be presented by representatives of Phoenix Bakery, one of the oldest bakeries in Chinatown. The events for each day of the festival will conclude will the official Moon Festival Ceremony and moon viewing, which will begin at 8 p.m. Other events in Chinatown during the Moon Festival include a Crime Prevention and Safety Fair on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. At this free event, attendees can see up close fire trucks and police cars, watch martial arts demonstrations and listen to speakers on self-defense and safety. The fair is being held at Castelar Elementary School. For more information on the 2001 Moon Festival, call (213) 680-0243 or visit www.chinatownla.com. MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X17336604
SOURCE Los Angeles Chinatown Business Council
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