AROUND THE GLOBE . . .
Said by many anthropologists and astrophysicists to be the original astronomers, Australian Aboriginal tribal traditions include a balancing dance performed around a small stone respresentation of the sun calendar on the season change.
In China, The Moon Festival is celebrated in mid-Autumn for the abundance of the summer's harvest. One of the main foods is a "mooncake" filled with lotus, sesame seeds, and a duck egg or dried fruit.
Higan, or Higan-e, is a week of Japanese Buddhist services observed during the September and March equinoxes. Both have been national holidays since the Meiji period (1868-1912). Higan, or “other shore”, refers to the spirits of the dead reaching Nirvana. It is a time for such reverence by visiting, cleaning and decorating their graves.
Pagans from around the world meet at this spiritual place in England to chant words of gratitude to the Earth.
The Roman Christian service of Michaelmas (also known as the Feast of Michael and All Angels) falls near the September equinox and regales a biblical tale of feasting.
Pagans celebrate Mabon as one of the eight Sabbats (celebrations based on the cycles of the sun). It reveres the second harvest and the start of winter preparations. Thought of as the time to respect the impending dark while giving thanks to the sunlight.
In California's Sonoma County, the grape harvest includes an all ages World Championship Grape Stomp. Also happening is a pygmy goat show, cow-milking contests, a pumpkin toss, sheepdog trials, and a giant pumpkin weigh-in.
HADES MARITAL REUNION
In Greek mythology, fall is associated with when the goddess Persephone returns to the underworld to be with her husband Hades. It was supposedly a good time to enact rituals for protection and security as well as reflect on successes or failures from the previous months.
NATIONAL APPLE FEST
Southern Pennsylvania has been celebrating the apple for 44 years with this event held over two Fall weekends. Jellies, pancakes, syrups, sauces, candies...Pie-eating and apple-bobbing contests... A tractor square dance in which they ride two by two, in formation like couples on a dance floor...