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Northern/Central California Obon/Summer Festivals This Weekend

The weekend of July 13-14 will be a busy one for festival-goers in Northern and Central California.

Entertainment/displays: O-Nami Taiko, kendo, Japanese dance, hula, ikebana, bonsai

Food: Chicken teriyaki gyoza, udon, sushi, manju, teri-burgers, teri-dogs, corn on the cob, shave ice

Games: Bingo, Demon Smash, Koi Pond, Nickel Pitch

Also featuring a Buddhism mini-lecture, silent auction, boutique and crafts, bookstore and more.

Info: (510) 471-2581,,

Food: Yakitori, award-winning curry (beef and veggie), chirashi sushi, barbecue spare ribs, maki sushi, sanuki udon, ohagi, inari sushi.

Also featuring bingo (win great prizes), silent auction, bake sale, raffle, and bounce house for kids.

A portion of proceeds will go toward supporting Boy Scout Troop 58.

Info: (415) 931-0453,

Saturday, July 13

11:30 a.m.: Temple opens/Buddhism 101

12 p.m.: Food booths open

12:30 p.m.: Kyodo Taiko

1 p.m.: Games and bookstore open

2 p.m.: Buddhism 101, bingo opens

3 p.m.: Jodaiko Taiko

3:30 p.m.: Buddhism 101/My Path to the Betsuin

4:30 p.m.: San Jose Taiko

5:30 p.m.: Temple closes

6 p.m.: Chidori Band

7:30 p.m.: Bon Odori starts

Sunday, July 14

11:30 a.m.: Temple opens/Buddhism 101

12 p.m.: Food booths open

12:30 p.m.: Touzan Taiko

1 p.m.: Games and bookstore open

1:30 p.m.: Bakuhatsu Taiko

2 p.m.: Buddhism 101, bingo opens

3:30 p.m.: San Jose Taiko

4 p.m.: Temple closes

4:30 p.m.: Chidori Band

6 p.m. Bon Odori starts

Info: (408) 293-9292,

2 p.m.: “Asian flair” foods (some traditional, some not so traditional), beverages, beer and dessert booths open

4 p.m.: Carnival-style games, bake-walks, taiko drumming

7:30 p.m.: Special memorial ceremony honoring those who have passed since the last festival

8 p.m: Bon Odori, taiko drumming

Join in on the dancing — no experience necessary.

Honor a loved one with a personalized memorial lantern.

There will also be a raffle drawing.

Info: (559) 442-4054,,

Toro nagashi is a long-held Japanese tradition where candle-lit lanterns are released into rivers to guide the spirits of ancestors back to the other world during the Obon season.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m.; program starts at 7:15 p.m.; lantern ceremony at 8:30 p.m.

Design your own lantern from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Cost: $20.

Bento box (pre-order): $12. Character bento or yakitori bento.

Beer, sake, wine, dessert: $5.

Info: (415) 346-7540,,

The two temples take turns hosting the event. This year’s host is Berkeley Buddhist Temple.

Kimono dressing starts at 5 p.m. in upstairs classrooms. All dancers are asked to arrive early.

Final dance practice on Thursday, July 11, from 7:30 to 9 p.m.

Obon/Hatsubon service (honoring members who have passed away since the 2018 Obon) on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. Guest speaker: Rev. Michael Endo.

Info: (510) 841-1356, (510) 843-6933,,

Final dance practice on Thursday, July 11, from 7 to 8:15 p.m.

Refreshments will be sold during Obon and the rehearsals by church organizations.

Hatsubon service on Sunday. Family service at 9:30 a.m. with guest speaker Rev. Bob Oshita, minister emeritus from Sacramento; Japanese service at 11:30 a.m. with guest speaker Rev. Masanari Yamagishi, resident minister from Lodi.

Info: (916) 446-0121,

Teriyaki chicken plate: generous half chicken, potato salad, rice, tea or coffee, all for just $13. Drive-thru pickup of boxed dinners opens at 8 a.m.

On the outdoor stage: Ten Ten Taiko, Sonoma County Taiko, Ensohza Minyoshu (Japanese folk music and dance), DeLeon Judo Club, Takemusu Aikido of Sebasotpol, Whispering Light (Native flute and guitar).

Also featuring bonsai, exhibits, handicrafts, raffle and bingo.

Info: (707) 823-2252,

Enjoy delicious Japanese foods, ikebana and bonsai displays, Asian Store, raffle drawings all afternoon.

Schedule of events:

12 p.m.: Opening ceremony on Yagura

12:15 p.m.: Shorinji Kempo on Yagura

12:30 p.m.: Tai chi with Rev. Hei Takarabe in Social Hall; tea ceremony in Tea Room

1:30 p.m.: Bonsai demonstration by Katsumi Kinoshita in Social Hall

2 p.m.: Introduction to Buddhism by Rev. Jay Shinseki in Hondo; Bojuka Ryu (martial arts) on Yagura

2:30 p.m.: Ikebana demonstration by Junko Matsuoka in Social Hall; tea ceremony in Tea Room

3 p.m.: Shinsho Mugen Daiko on Yagura

3:30 p.m.: Obon service officated by Rev. Shinseki in Hondo

4 p.m.: Silent auction ends; raffle grand prize drawing; Bon Odori begins in Yagura area

This is a free event; donations welcome. Limited parking is available across the street from the temple.

Info: (831) 372-8181,

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