Hello, today is the seventh day of the seventh month. This is one of my favorite holidays! TANABATA, meaning “Star Festival.”
If you make a wish, as long as it doesn’t rain where you are, your wish will come true. Here’s the story from this site:
Two stars, Weaver Princess Star and Herd Boy Star were in love. The Weaver Princess Star was very good at weaving, and her father was a heavenly king. Although the Herd Boy Star was a boy of lowly birth, the king, kind-hearted, let them marry. But because they were in love so much, they forgot to do their work. The Weaver Princess Star did not weave the cloth and the Herd Boy Star did not take care of the herds of sheep. The king became so angry, that he decided they must be separated. They were told to live at the opposite sides of the Milky Way, the Sparkling River of the Heavens. They were only to meet on the night of July 7th, when they cross the sky.
If it rains on July 7th, then the two stars, Orihime the weaver princess and Hikoboshi the herd boy, will not be able to meet for another year. So children and adults in Japan write down their wishes on this day on colorful origami paper and hang up their wishes on bamboo trees.
If it does not rain on this year, then the two stars meet and everyone who made a wish has his wish come true! But if it rains, then the Milky Way, the river of the heavens, overflows, and the two cannot cross to meet each other on this one day of the year. People in Japan also wear the summer yukata (see further down the page here) and dance for the festival.
The particular two stars that this story describes are Orihime the princess weaver star called Altair in the constellation Aquila and the Hikoboshi herd boy star called Vega in the constellation Lyra. Altair and Vega are two of the three vertices of the Summer Triangle, which can be seen best in the summer months when it is almost directly overhead. Here are some other Tanabata sites: a children’s version, probably the most in-depth description, the full version, and a simple great description.
WHEN: July 7th, every year.