The 13th annual Moon Festival will be held in Flushing on Saturday, beginning at 2 p.m. and ending with fireworks at 8 p.m. in Kissena Corridor Park, between Main Street and Elder Avenue.
Sponsored by the Flushing Development Center, the festival will kick off with kite flying from 2 to 6 p.m. in the park
A parade will step off at 5 p.m. and travel along Main Street, from 40th Road to Elder Avenue. Participants include the Francis Lewis High School JROTC, lion dancers and various dance groups from Thailand, Bolivia, Korea and the Caribbean.
The parade group performers will entertain at the park from 6 to 7 p.m.
According to Fred Fu, FDC head, the festival is an ancient tradition dating back nearly 1,400 years. Also known as the Mid-Autumn or Mooncake Festival, the annual event is held either in September or October, during the biggest and brightest moon, known as the harvest moon.
The legend goes that a lady named Chang-O was punished by a goddess and banished to the moon for swallowing a magical pill without telling her husband. Her beauty supposedly brightens the moon.
In modern times, families gather to gaze at the moon, eat special foods and celebrate the fall harvest. Moon cakes are traditionally eaten and are filled with red bean paste, fruit or jam, preserved egg yolks or ham.