This weekend, September 5 to 7, 2014 is very special in the Chinese lunar calendar. It's the Moon Festival celebration, the time of year when the moon reaches its peak fullness and brightness. I took a little time to learn the history of the celebration through a Chinese friend. The festival celebrates family reunion. It's a time when moon cakes, a circular pastry made from red bean or lotus seed paste, are given primarily to relatives, but also friends and business colleagues.
There is a historic legend around the festival and the moon cakes. It dates back to the 12th century when the Mongolians were oppressing the Chinese. Legend says that the Mongolians would not eat the moon cakes, so they became the perfect hiding spot for the exchange of messages and plans for the rebellion. The Chinese were able to ward off their oppressors in 1,368 AD.
As we walked down the White Rock promenade and pier last night, we found it hard to imagine the 1,000's of years of history that is steeped in the White Rock Moon Festival. The evening couldn't have been more perfect when at 9 pm, there was an amazing display of fireworks. We looked behind us and saw the houses of White Rock lit up in technocolour. So many people were silhouetted out on their decks watching the skies light up over Semiahmoo Bay. The view homes of White Rock that are clustered all the way up the hill had a front row seat to the amazing show. I wondered if they knew the history behind this amazing event.
For anyone in the White Rock area this weekend, I recommend that you get down to the White Rock beach and take in the festivities. The best place to be is on foot on the boardwalk or on the beach. You can enjoy your family and friends, listen to music, and soak up he sun. The 500 red lanterns dotting the promenade and pier are an amazing site, particularly at night.