AN ENCHANTING EXPERIENCE
2012 BON FESTIVAL
MORIKAMI MUSEUM and JAPANESE GARDENS
Obon, or the Bon Festival, is a traditional Japanese observance held over summer for three days. It is a holiday which honors ancestors and affords the opportunity to thank them for “contributing to the quality of life enjoyed by the living”. In Japan, Obon, signifies a special time when the spirits of deceased family members are believed to return for a short visit. During the Bon Festival, families gather in the village for singing and dancing. The lively folk dancing is intended to entertain the visiting spirits. Joyous music, by drummers and flutists, encourage festival-goers to dance in circles. On the last evening of the three day festival, paper lanterns are floated on bodies of water as a farewell. In Japan, the otherworld is traditionally regarded as lying beyond the sea or mountains.
The Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens combine the three day event into one joyous occasion. At the Morikami the celebration features Bon Odori folk dancing, taiko drum performances, street fair, lantern floating, and fireworks! Hundreds of handcrafted paper lanterns and tanzaku slips, on hand made boats made of straw, wood, and paper are set afloat during the lantern floating festival. The symbolic flames gently guide the spirits of the ancestors back to the other side. The enchanting evening is concluded with a fireworks display.
Honor, remember, and celebrate those who have passed away Saturday, August 18, from 4:00pm – 9:00pm with this extraordinary experience! Admission is limited and tickets are available online. For advance sales only and information check out Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens at www.morikami.org/bon.