Valley JCC Kicks Off Obon Season

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Bon dancing at Valley Japanese Community Center. (MARIO G. REYES/Rafu Shimpo)

Bon dancing at Valley Japanese Community Center. (MARIO G. REYES/Rafu Shimpo)

The Valley Japanese Community Center, 8850 Lankershim Blvd., Sun Valley, hosts its annual Obon Festival on the weekend of June 20-21 from 5 to 10 p.m.

Crowd-pleasing and classic all-time favorites such as udon, teriyaki beef, sushi, Chinese chicken salad, and fresh roasted corn on the cob and homemade baked goods are some of the foods that will be available for purchase.

Demonstrations of judo, karate, kendo, tea ceremony and minyo odori will be held. Festival-type games, exhibits of calligraphy/sumi-e, and schoolwork completed by Japanese school students will be featured on both days.

Returning on Saturday to Sun Valley for the sixth year is Matsutoyo Kai with special performance of minyo music. Returning for the seventh year is L.A. Matsuri Taiko, who will fill the air with their thunderous drumming on Sunday. A special pre-ondo performance of Okinawan sanshin music will be given by Afuso Ryu Kenkyuu Chochi Kai of Los Angeles. They will also perform “Ashibinaa” live during the ondo.

After the demonstrations, join in the Bon Odori dances. These are dances of joy, so age, looks or experience should not inhibit anyone from entering the circle of dancers.

For more information, contact Christine Inouye at [email protected] or (818) 825-9583.

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