HFM logo with 'alive' linesWORKSHOP INFORMATION here – Workshops

The Harvest Full Moon project is an arts and environment-based community project originally created in 2015 by artist Marina Szijarto as part of the City of Richmond’s Artists in Residency public arts programme, in partnership with City Centre Community Centre association.

Marina works with hundreds of City Centre residents  to collectively prepare for and create a participatory community gathering in celebration of the Harvest Full Moon, a time of year to share our connections, good fortunes and harvest blessings.

This project and artist residency continued each year by featuring an exciting range of free workshops and open studio drop-in sessions leading up to the Harvest Full Moon procession and Celebration that have previously been held at Minoru park (Bowling Green Road, near the bowling greens and the lakes) in Richmond BC.

See the Video about the project here = Harvest Full Moon project video

 HMF leavesThe Full Moon and Harvest season

The full moon in September is the most beautiful moon of the year. It is called the ‘Harvest Full Moon’ as it coincides with the farmers and fishers harvesting time.

Harvest time is celebrated all around the world – it is a time to gather as a community and give thanks for the local food the earth has provided for us as we head into the winter months. It is also a time of “Lunar Contemplation” as it was called in ancient China.

Richmond is a beautiful island with some of the most fertile farmland in the world. We are surrounded by the Fraser River, home of the salmon and other fish.  Let us give thanks for our good fortune to be living here together and our ecological unity.

How we created a locally grown, community Harvest Full Moon Celebration!
Together we created created stars, moons and lanterns to carry in a procession. We printed ‘gratitude flags’ to decorate the community hall. We made baskets from local indigenous and introduced plants to hold the moon cakes we made to eat together. Together we drank tea, listened to stories, poems and music and joined hands in a community dance – under the light of the Harvest Full Moon.

HFM rabbit and lanntern

About the Artist
Marina Szijarto
Community comments about the Harvest Full Moon Project:
1) Email letter from volunteer
“Hi Marina!
Hello, my name is Lina and I came to the volunteer parade yesterday. Thank you so much for hosting it because it was really fun. And it was the first time I really felt connected with the community. I met some people that seemed like we were friends for a long time but we had never met. It was so fun and inspiring. I felt what community meant, connected with people from all different age groups. I hope that there will be more opportunities like this.  Thanks,
Lina Z.
Ps. These are the pictures from last night! Pps. Thanks again!”2) Kirsten Close, City Centre Community Centre -Area coordinator. City of Richmond 
“I got goosebumps reading Lina’s profound words. It was a phenomenal event that was hopefully just the beginning of building a stronger identity for the residents of City Centre. It was incredible being part of this process from beginning to end.”

4) Gary Cross,
City Centre Community Centre Association – Board member

“On the evening we walked together celebrating the harvest moon, I felt that for the first time, we were a community celebrating in something together. Our City Center neighbourhood was no longer just a mere spot on the map, we were connected. I deeply hope that The Harvest Full Moon Festival will grow until it’s ingrained as part of our culture and tradition. Best regards, Gary Cross”

3) Suzi Rosenberg, City Centre Community Centre – Community Facilities Coordinator. City of Richmond

“This past year, as the Community Centre lead, I had the opportunity to work with Marina Szijarto on the Harvest Full Moon Project in partnership with the City of Richmond, Richmond Public Art, and City Centre Community Association. From the very beginning stages of the process, Marina opened my eyes to how enriching a collaborative community engagement project could be. Marina’s artistic vision provided a perfect framework for collaboration and input and she valued each and every interaction she encountered throughout the project. The overwhelming success of the project was founded on a few key factors including inclusiveness, a sense of ownership, and a strong message and meaning of gratitude. By the end of the project the feelings of community, mutual respect, and appreciation was felt by all of those involved. This was truly a unique experience that has left a legacy of inspiration for future opportunities. I will forever be grateful for the experience and deeper understanding of the benefits of community collaboration. Thank you, Marina!”

5) Kirsten Close, City Centre Community Centre -Area coordinator. City of Richmond
 “Marina Szijarto was brought on as an artist-in-residence by the City of Richmond and the City Centre Community Association to raise awareness for the new City Centre Community Centre and to address the challenge of a community that didn’t feel a strong sense of belonging. The Harvest Moon Project acted as the catalyst for the local community to see our facility as a place where people can hang out, get to know their neighbours, and build an appreciation for the arts. The project – including the various workshops leading up to the final event – was the epitome of community development and had a real impact in terms of building community.  Furthermore, Marina’s workshops also evoked an environmental sustainability lens which is an important focus for City Centre Community Centre and the City of Richmond. It was absolutely amazing and heartwarming to see such a diverse cross-section of participants and their attendance felt so organic and authentic. The event was truly magical! I absolutely feel that the Harvest Moon Project will have a lasting impact on getting others interested in engaging community through the arts!”
 6) David Ince: Manager, Community Recreation Services City of Richmond 
“I participated in the lantern parade for the Harvest Moon Festival  from Lang Park to C4 and took part in some of the intercultural activities during the festivities afterwards. My thrill is that these folks are neighbours of the centre and by the process and parade, have animated the City Centre and truly are building community. This was the type of program that I felt was part of the original vision for this community centre in the urban core of Richmond. The artist-in-residence, Marina, has done a great job.”

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