Full moon has Chinese Lion roaring at Great Hall celebrations

THE Old Woking Community Centre was transformed into the Great Hall of China as a colourful celebration honoured Woking residents with origins in the Far East.

The Chinese Association of Woking is in its 26th year, and members were in fine spirits with song, dance and competitions at their Mid-Autumn Festival on Sunday.

PRETTY IN PINK – the Mongolian dance group

PRETTY IN PINK – the Mongolian dance group

Tai chi demonstrations, kung fu displays and choreographed routines, one of which was Mongolian, had the 100 plus gathered guests roaring with delight like Chinese Lions.

Some caught the eye with traditional fan-dances (right) but all shone in customary Chinese robes created from dazzling diamonds and the finest silk.

The event is the second largest festival on the Chinese calendar and represents the fullest moon of the year.

The full moon symbolises the importance of the family as a supportive unit, and paper lanterns and moon-cakes are traditional parts of the event.

The lunar power was definitely flowing through members and their guests over the weekend, and a bumper attendance ensured the association paid homage to their home nation in exquisite style.

“The festival was well attended with around 100 people joining in on the festivities,” said organiser Michelle Wong.

“We were very excited to have the Woking Mayor, Anne Roberts joining in – in fact she enjoyed it so much that she stayed right until the end.”

Excited children were not left out and took part in a lantern-building competition.

Mayor Roberts was chosen to present creative winners with their prizes before entries were released with a wish for the coming year.

The association was formed in 1987 and is the cultural, educational and social heart of the Chinese community in Woking, offering a slice of home-grown traditions to help maintain the heritage of families who now live in the UK.

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