Tuesday, 31 March 2009 17:04

Downtown Clearwater Festivals Japanese Culture and Lantern Event

Written by  City of Clearwater
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Japanese Culture and Lantern Festival to Celebrate Sister Cities’ 50th Anniversary

CLEARWATER, FL (April 2009)  –  The City of Clearwater will commemorate the 50th anniversary of its Sister Cities relationship with Nagano, Japan with their Japanese Culture and Lantern Festival on April 25th from 4-8:30pm in Station Square Park, downtown Clearwater. It will feature all things Japanese including cultural displays, demonstrations, musical performances and the festival’s highlight: a lantern lighting at dusk.
Miami’s Consul General of Japan, the Honorable Hiroshi Yamaguchi, will participate with Clearwater officials in a welcome ceremony. Demonstrations of traditional Japanese martial activities will include judo, kendo and yagyu. Other Japanese traditions on display will be the art of kimono, tea ceremonies, as well as arts and crafts such as bonsai, sumi-e painting, calligraphy, the construction of lanterns and origami. Musical performances will include taiko drummers and the koto, a Japanese stringed instrument.

In the days preceding the festival, downtown merchants will prepare for the event with a “Riddle Contest,” a Japanese variation on the scavenger hunt. The public is invited to participate in the contest that will begin April 10th. More information will be available at the downtown Farmer’s Market beginning Wednesday, April 8th or online at www.myclearwater.com/culturalarts. Prizes will be announced at the festival.

Clearwater’s lantern festival mirrors a similar event that has been observed annually in Nagano since it hosted the 1998 XVIII Winter Olympic Games. The City of Clearwater collaborated with Nagano on that worldwide event, a highlight of the Sister Cities relationship that has been active since 1959.

The Japanese Culture and Lantern Festival is free and open to the public. It is also part of the city’s annual Fun ‘n Sun Festival. Further information is available through the Cultural Affairs Division at www.myclearwater.com/culturalarts or by calling (727) 562-4809.
Read 970 times Last modified on Thursday, 09 April 2009 12:27