On Sunday, Sept. 19, the Orange County Chinese Association, joined by state Sen. James Skoufis, celebrated the annual Mid-Autumn Festival.
The Mid-Autumn Festival or Moon Festival is celebrated by many Asian communities such as China and other Southeast Asian countries. The festival is the second most important festival in Chinese culture after Chinese New Year.
Sadly, the COVID-19 virus prevents our community from coming together to celebrate as a community and, for our safety, members of the OCCA stayed in their homes for the Moon Festival.
However, the virus is not strong enough to defeat our spirit and culture, so the OCCA celebrated through a zoom meeting. It does not feel the same in a zoom meeting, but it is still important to be able to commemorate the Mid-Autumn Festival as one big family.
‘Why must we celebrate?’
But what is most important is how and why must we celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival? On this beautiful night, people celebrate it by gathering for dinners, worshiping the moon, lighting paper candles and eating mooncakes.
It is just like Thanksgiving, where families gather together to eat and celebrate the blessings they have been given throughout the year.
As the full moon shines over, the congregation members of the Orange County Chinese put together a spectacular show to celebrate the occasion including performances from Jessie Gao, Yongjing Cao, Pei Ke, Claire He, Ping Lu, Jinlin Du, Alyssa Chen, Kevin Jin, Samantha Liu, Aria Zhang accompanied by Kevin Jin, Gao Fei and special guest, Zhao Taisheng.
Under the direction of our Hostess Juan Li with her partner Jeffery Shi, Jessie Gao, an eight-years old OCCS student, started off the festival by singing a gorgeous rendition of “May All of Us Remain in this World.”
Next up was Pei Ke, a professional singer, who beautifully sang “Homeland Nostalgia.”
Not one to be outdone, Claire He, a student from OCCA, played the hulusi spectacularly in an “Ode to Pearl Flower.”
Following Claire’s performance came Lu Ping’s voice rang out as he sang “ The Hometown of the Moon.”
Then came Du Jinlin’s exquisite performance as he sang “The moon in the Edge of the Horizon.”
After that the student group containing Alyssa Chen, Kevin Jin, Samantha Liu and Ariya Zhang told the tale of “The Legend of the Mid Autumn Festival” and its history. Not to mention the incredible performance by Gao Fei as he sang “A Crescent Moon.”
Finally, Taisheng Zhao, a famous Sanxuan instrument player, also played three other ancient Chinese instruments.
Make sure to have a happy Mid Autumn Festival and to enjoy your scrumptious mooncakes.
Matthew Qu and Andrew Wu are OCCA Student Government Board members. Matthew is in the 11th grade of Monroe-Woodbury High School and Andrew is in 9th grade of Cornwall High School.