Celebrating The Mid Autumn Festival In Kuching, Sarawak

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The Mid Autumn Festival is a very important festival celebrated by Chinese globally. This festival is celebrated in different ways in different countries. However most celebrations centered around the eating of mooncakes and the carrying of lanterns. Legend has it that back in ancient China, military messages were put inside the mooncakes. This eventually led to the overthrow of an unpopular ruler.

In Kuching, the Mid Autumn Festival is celebrated annually with the holding of the Intercultual Mooncake Festival at Carpenter Street (so name as the street used to be occupied by carpenters). This festival started many years back with just a few stalls selling mooncake. Today the festival has become of the signature events of Kuching. It can best described as a street celebration of the Mid Autumn Festival with stalls selling a variety of street food and wares with interesting street performances. Let the pictures below tell you the story.

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Lanterns on display at a nearby shopping complex. These lanterns are unique as they contained native Borneo motifs.

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The arch at the entrance of Carpenter Street.

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Visitors can listen to Chinese classical music.

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The street is crowded with visitors who are enjoying themselves.

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A variety of lanterns are for sale.

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Visitors can choose from an endless variety of mooncake.

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Visitors taking photographs with traditionally clashed Chinese ladies.

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The open air theater with performances is a crowd puller.

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Street performances include lion dance.

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"Lotong" the ice cream of yesteryear which I used to enjoy in my childhood.

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Martial arts demonstrations by children.

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The Malay community also participate in the festival by doing the joget ( a Malay dance).

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An Orang Ulu man playing the sape. The music produced is melodious.

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A vendor cooking oyster omelette.

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Japanese food sold adds an international flavor to the festival.

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Some of the street food that are on sale.

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There is even a charity hair cut which charges only Rm2.00 (USD 50 cents).

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Lanterns hanging outside a temple.

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Anyone for porridge with crocodile meat?

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Trinkets and handicrafts for sale.

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A temple in Carpenter Street that has been beautifully restored.

I spent an enjoyable night soaking up the sights and sounds of the street celebration. Cultural performances, tantalizing street food and a multitude of knick-knack certainly add excitement to the festival.

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