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Mid-Autumn Festival in Asia: A time for lanterns, moon cakes and family
Friday, September 20th, 2013

Millions of people around Asia are celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival this week. 

The ancient festival, also known as Moon Cake Festival and Lantern Festival, is a celebration of abundance and togetherness. 

Many people give moon cakes, which are usually round and contain a sweet filling, light paper lanterns and spend time with family. 

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The 'Rising Moon' lantern is turned on for the first time at the one2free Lantern Wonderland Mid-Autumn Festival in Hong Kong's Victoria Park on Sept. 14, 2013. The lantern installation was made with 7,000 recycled plastic bottles and won the Gold Award in the Lantern Wonderland Design Competition.

(Jessica Hromas - Getty Images)
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Lanterns in the shape of pigs are displayed at the one2free Lantern Wonderland Mid-Autumn Festival in Hong Kong's Victoria Park on Sept. 14, 2013.

(Jessica Hromas - Getty Images)
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Six-year-old Thomas Wong joins other revellers at the one2free Lantern Wonderland Mid-Autumn Festival in Hong Kong's Victoria Park on Sept. 14, 2013.

(Jessica Hromas - Getty Images)
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A mother and daughter leave a local market with a star-shaped lantern for the Mid-Autumn Festival in Hanoi, Vietnam, on Sept. 16, 2013.

( - AFP/Getty Images)
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A vendor of star-shaped lanterns walks past a stall selling paper masks at a market in Hanoi, Vietnam, on Sept. 16, 2013.

( - AFP/Getty Images)
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Bumper-to-bumper traffic in Beijing on Sept. 16, 2013. Traffic congestion in the Chinese capital is worse than usual due to the Mid-Autumn Festival.

(ChinaFotoPress - Getty Images)
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Tourists and locals take photos of lanterns on display in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, during the Lantern Festival, which is also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival, on Sept. 19, 2013.

(Rahman Roslan - Getty Images)
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Indonesian Chinese celebrate the Moon Cake Festival – also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival and Lantern Festival – by releasing paper lanterns at Sanggar Agung Temple on Sept. 19, 2013 in Surabaya.

(Robertus Pudyanto - Getty Images)
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An Indonesian Chinese person prays at the Sanggar Agung Temple in Surabaya on Sept. 19, 2013, during the Moon Cake Festival.

(Robertus Pudyanto - Getty Images)
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Indonesian Chinese kneel in prayer at the Sanggar Agung Temple in Surabaya on Sept. 19, 2013, during the Moon Cake Festival.

(Robertus Pudyanto - Getty Images)
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It's a lovely thing when shared traditions unite so many different people.