The popular Uminari Taiko drumming group will be back for another performance at the Japanese Cultural Fair this Saturday (Oct. 21) at the Esquimalt Recreation Centre. Courtesy Uminari Taiko

Annual fair brings all things Japanese to Esquimalt

Victoria Nikkei society event offers traditional entertainment, food and more

Making cross-cultural connections with people around the region is a big part of the Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society’s activities throughout the year.

The volunteer group hopes to enrich those connections further this Saturday (Oct. 21), when they host the 18th Japanese Cultural Fair.

“We have third- and fourth-generation Japanese-Canadians living in Victoria,” says society president Tsugio Kurushima. “This fair is a way for them to connect with those cultural and ethnic roots, but it also serves as an outreach to the greater community.”

An example of how the fair and its related activities bring together locals of Japanese heritage came during the recent preparation of manju, the traditional Japanese confection, for the concession. “We had 25 people there helping out, including some [Japanese] exchange students who said they had never experienced this sort of thing at home.”

The availability of that and other traditional foods such as prepared chicken or vegetarian bento boxes, onigiri rice balls and special YYJ dogs – hot dogs with Japanese toppings – is one of the mainstays of the fair.

So is the entertainment, which includes the always popular Taiko drummers, songs from Soran Bushi and the Youth Choir, musical performances of minyo and koto (stringed instrument) and shakuhachi (flute), a Bon Odori folk dance performance by the Furusato Dancers and presentations of classical Japanese theatre.

Hands on demonstrations feature bonsai gardening, ikebana flower arranging, growing Japanese vegetables and how to stage a traditional tea ceremony.

Some new elements that organizers are excited about is an interactive haiku poetry presentation, hosted by local Haiku Canada president Terry Ann Carter, a presentation of Japanese classical theatre by University of Victoria Japanese studies faculty member Cody Poulton, and a martial arts demonstration by the Victoria Judo Club, which will complement the annual aikido and kendo demos.

“We have amassed quite a following over the years,” Kurushima says.“By having these different things, like haiku, we’re hoping to expand our potential audience demographic.”

The fair, free to attend, takes over the Esquimalt Recreation Centre (527 Fraser St.) community use areas from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For a full schedule visit http://bit.ly/2ysrUgt or for more information about the Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society, visit vncs.ca.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Saanich passenger caught smoking weed in a car issued $230 fine

Saanich police did a field sobriety test on the driver and deemed it safe for him to drive

VIDEO: Tent city moves to Woodwynn Farm, arrests made

The group is asking the government to provide housing for 60 tent city members

Cougar spotted Saturday morning in Saanich

Police found paw prints consistent with cougars in the area

Colwood Elementary gets new inclusive and accessible playground equipment

Parks and playgrounds on the West Shore have equipment for everyone

B.C. Guide dogs is looking for volunteer puppy raisers

Labrador retrievers need to learn obedience and socialization before heading to work

WATCH: Twelve Angry Jurors puts a new spin on an old tale

Canadian College of Performing Arts opens season with reworked version of Reginald Rose teleplay

Team Canada gold medal winners for first time in world curling championship

Team Canada earned gold in Kelowna at the 2018 Winn Rentals World Mixed Curling Championship

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for Oct. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you support amalgamation for communities in the Capital Region?

Residents in Victoria and Saanich will be voting on Oct. 20 on… Continue reading

Payette invites critics to ‘come and spend a few days’ with her

Governor General Julie Payette made her first official to B.C. back in March

More pot stores expected in B.C. in coming ‘weeks and months’: attorney general

Attorney General David Eby and Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth visited the new BC Cannabis Store in the province’s Interior

Telus launches charitable foundation to help vulnerable youth

The Telus Friendly Future Foundation complements other social initiatives by the company, including Mobility for Good

Police say suspicious death of B.C. artist ruled a homicide

Patrick Zube Aylward’s body was found in a residence on a rural road outside of Seton Portage, west of Lillooet, B.C.

Temporary roads being built in areas affected by landslide in northern B.C.

Emergency Management BC news release says Disaster Financial Assistance is available to eligible residents of the Peace River Regional District who may have been affected by the landslides

Most Read