Above: Colorful yukata such as these modeled by these lovely young ladies shown in a snapshot here provided by organizers of the 2011 Tacoma Buddhist Temple Bon Odori may become a part of your own summer Bon Odori Memories.
Our lives in the South Sound are often busy and action packed, so we are especially lucky to enjoy such splendid scenic outdoor venues close at hand to savor a few moments of the quiet, serene and beautiful. You're in luck because the best of both worlds can be on your plate on Saturday, July 30, from 5:00 p.m – 9:00 pm at the annual Tacoma Buddhist Temple Bon Odori Dance and Food Festival.
For decades festival organizers have warmly extended a welcome to members of the public and persons outside the temple who might want to attend. It's a much-looked forward summer treat and bonding experience on my family's summer calendar for a number of years. Take friends, your family or even a neighbor to enjoy traditional Japanese festival dancing, music, memorial candle lighting, taiko drum demonstrations and plenty of delicious Japanese edibles.
The Bon Odori (or O-Bon) has it's roots in tradition with a much loved custom in the more leisurely days of summer in old country to set aside a special time each year to enjoy, connect, remember, celebrate and honor friends, family and fellow townsfolk in our lives who have since died or come before us.
Locally the Bon Odori has been ably hosted by Tacoma Buddhist Temple for sixty-five years and has played a rich part in the hearts and memories of many area citizens beyond its original following in the Japanese-American community over a half-century ago.
A brand new feature of this year's festival will mark the opening of beer garden offering adults and their guests an opportunity to sit back and enjoy sake or local beer. Tacoma Buddhist Temple is located three blocks west of the UW Tacoma campus at 1717 Fawcett Street. Mark your calendars and plan to attend! For more information about the Tacoma Buddhist Temple and the upcoming Bon Odori click here.