Monday, September 8, 2014

Celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival with Federal Hotel Kuala Lumpur

Falling on the 15th day of the 8th month according to the Chinese lunar calendar, the Mid-Autumn Festival is the second grandest festival after the Spring Festival in China. It takes its name from the fact that it is always celebrated in the middle of the autumn season. The day is also known as the Moon Festival, as at that time of the year the moon is at its roundest and brightest.

Mid-Autumn Festival is an inherited custom of moon sacrificial ceremonies. The ancient Chinese observed that the movement of the moon had a close relationship with changes of the seasons and agricultural production. Hence, to express their thanks to the moon and celebrate the harvest, they offered a sacrifice to the moon on autumn days.

Mid-Autumn Festival in Xian
This custom could be traced back to the Zhou Dynasty (1046 - 256 BC) and was more often practiced by the royal class on the Autumnal Equinox. At that time, the custom had no festival background at all. Later in the Sui (581 - 618 AD) and Tang (618 - 907 AD) dynasties, social prosperity inspired the custom of appreciating the moon on the moon sacrifice ceremony day among common people and the two merged. The people expressed their faith more liberally than the royal class and so they did not strictly hold their activities on the Autumnal Equinox. So August 15th of the Chinese lunar calendar, the closest full moon day to the Autumnal Equinox, turned out to be a better choice and was set as a fixed festival. This happened in the Tang Dynasty. By the time of the Northern Song Dynasty (960 - 1127 AD), Mid-Autumn Festival had already become a widely celebrated folk festival.

Romantically speaking, the festival is to commemorate Chang E, who in order to protect her beloved husband’s elixir, ate it herself and flew to the moon.

On the festival day, family members gather to offer sacrifice to the moon, appreciate the bright full moon, eat moon cakes, and express strong yearnings toward family members and friends who live afar. In addition, there are some other customs like playing lanterns, and dragon and lion dances in some regions. The unique customs of ethnic minorities are interesting as well, such as “chasing the moon” of Mongolians, and “steal vegetables or fruits” of the Dong people.

Moon cakes, the special food for the Mid-Autumn Festival.
The Moon Cake is the special food of Mid-Autumn Festival. On that day, people sacrifice moon cakes to the moon as an offering and eat them for celebration. Moon cakes come in various flavors according to the region. The moon cakes are round, symbolizing the reunion of a family, so it is easy to understand how the eating of moon cakes under the round moon can evoke longing for distant relatives and friends. Nowadays, people present moon cakes to relatives and friends to demonstrate that they wish them a long and happy life.

To celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival and their newly refurbished ballrooms, Federal Hotel Kuala Lumpur invited us for dinner and entertainment.

Despite the event falling on a Thursday evening, we managed to reach there in 30 minutes in the rush hour and were delighted to see that most guests had arrived on time as well.

We were ushered to the Ballroom on Level 2 passing the buffet spread located on both sides of the long corridor. Talk about temptation!

The cozy earth- toned ballroom seats 43 banquet tables and its low ceiling makes it easy to decorate. All you need is a good sound system and you're set for a good event held there.

After settling at our tables for a few minutes, they announced that dinner was served and ladies would be able to help themselves to the buffet line first. Ooh! Happiness!

We helped ourselves to fresh oysters, prawns, noodles, and a fusion of Asian and International cuisine.

After the Sales Director introduced the Federal Hotel KL team on stage, the entertainment began. Federal Hotel KL had specially commissioned a Chinese entertainment troop and we were serenaded by traditional instruments fused with modern rhythms and tunes, a mesmerizing fan dance, and classic Chinese singing for a good one hour.

CHARMAYNE LEE AT 03-2148 9166 EXT 2233

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Based in Malaysia, Best Events specializes in Conferences, Seminars, Murder Mystery Dinners, Gala Dinners and Team Building events.


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