Editor's note: This corrects the headline. The holiday is celebrated by Iranians. This also corrects the sub-head and third paragraph. The event takes place Sept. 25 and 26.
More than 1,000 years ago, a great Persian poet could see his country changing. A new language and atmosphere was taking shape.
He used his poetic talent to preserve his culture for years to come. He told the stories of Persia — heroes, kings, art, dance, sunrises and sunsets — from the moment the world was believed to have been created until the Islamic conquest of Persia in the 7th Century.
In today's world, Ferdowsi's "Shahnameh: The Epic of Kings" is regarded as a masterpiece in Persian literature and the savior of the Persian language and culture.
Shahnameh's spirit, its message of peace, humanity and freedom, is the theme of this year's Mehregan, the Persian Festival of Autumn, said Hossein Hosseini, board member of the Irvine-based Network of Persian American Professionals of Orange County, (NIPOC), which has organized Mehregan since 1994.