Chinese Moon Festival Celebration in Lahaina, Sept. 9-14
Lahaina Restoration Foundation hosts the Chinese Moon Festival the week of Monday, Sept. 9 through Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019. The festival will be held at the Wo Hing Museum and Cookhouse on Front Street. Admission to the museum will be free all week, culminating in a daylong celebration on Saturday.
Throughout the week, a special Chinese Moon Festival exhibit will be on display in the Wo Hing cookhouse. This exhibit will include a traditional offering for the Chinese Moon Goddess, and educational displays about the story of the Moon Festival.
Mooncakes from China will also be available for purchase at the Wo Hing museum gift shop. Mooncakes are dense, round pastries that are traditionally shared with family and loved ones during the Moon Festival. Call the Wo Hing museum gift shop at (808) 661-5553 for availability and prices.
On Saturday, Sept. 14 there will be a daylong celebration at the Wo Hing museum, with cultural presentations and hands-on experiences.
Learn about the significance of the Chinese Moon Festival and Tea Culture with a presentation by Dr. Busaba Yip, cultural director for the Wo Hing Museum. She will be joined by Fawn Shang, a Chinese tea practitioner from Honolulu. The presentation will be held at 1 p.m. and again at 5 p.m. in the Cookhouse Theater on Saturday. After the presentation, attendees can sample a mini-tasting of Taiwanese mooncakes, donated by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Honolulu.
From 4 to 7 p.m., learn Chinese knot-tying with Brenda Wong, and practice Chinese Calligraphy with Rev. Takayuki of Lahaina Shingon Mission. Both knot tying and calligraphy trace their roots back thousands of years in Chinese traditions. Hong Zhou will be playing the Erhu, a traditional Chinese stringed instrument.
Under colorful Chinese lanterns, purchase a pot of hot tea and mooncakes at the tea garden, which will be open from 4 to 8 p.m. Friendly games of Mahjong will be available for attendees to learn how to play the ancient Chinese game. Children’s art activities will be available from 4 to 8 p.m. as well. From 5 to 7:30 p.m., Chef Bobby Santos will give a cooking demonstration, frying up some crispy Gau Gee, with free samples for attendees.
Also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival, the Chinese Moon Festival is a favorite time for family and friends to come together under a full moon during the harvest. Mooncakes are often given as gifts, and shared with loved ones. Offerings of mooncakes and other food are traditionally left for Chang’e, the Chinese moon goddess.
“We are so pleased to honor Lahaina’s Chinese heritage, and invite everyone to come down to Front Street and take part in the Moon Festival,” said Theo Morrison, executive director of the Lahaina Restoration Foundation.
The Wo Hing Museum and Cookhouse, located at 858 Front Street, will offer free admission from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, September 9 to 13, and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 14.
The Chinese Moon Festival is sponsored by Hawaiʻi Tourism, County of Maui Office of Economic Development and Wo Hing Society. Lahaina Restoration Foundation would also like to extend a special mahalo to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Honolulu for a donation of mooncakes.