30th Annual Matsuri: A Festival of Japan

A celebration of Japanese culture featuring Japanese Exhibits, Demonstrations, Arts and Crafts, Children’s Activities, Bonsai Displays, Japanese Food and Entertainment.
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Japanese Culture
Taiko Drums
Martial Arts
Kimono Fashion


Phoenix - Arizona - US


PHOENIX - Jan. 26, 2014 - PRLog -- The 30th Annual Matsuri Festival takes over Heritage & Science Park in downtown Phoenix on Saturday and Sunday, February 22 & 23, 2014.  This two-day celebration features colorful displays of authentic Japanese art, crafts, and entertainment.  Traditional Japanese food and merchandise are also for sale.

For 2014, the festival committee chose the theme Kazari, otherwise known as a traditional Japanese ball/paper lantern.   These colorful paper lanterns come in various shapes and sizes.  Sometimes, these lanterns are made from silk or even vinyl fabrics and consist of collapsible bamboo or metal frames.  Vinyl lanterns are more durable and can withstand rain, sunlight and wind.

Often associated with festivals, paper lanterns are most common in Japan and are hung outside of businesses to attract attention.  When asked about the theme Kazari and why the committee chose it for their 30th celebration, Matsuri co- chair Ted Namba stated, “We’re so proud to celebrate 30 years in Arizona, and particularly to present this grand event in Phoenix, which is symbolic of light and renewal.  For three decades we’ve drawn attention to Japanese traditions, old and new.    As the phoenix is a symbol of renewal and Kazari of light, through Matsuri we aim to illuminate Japanese culture in the Valley and to carry on the traditions of Japan, that we love so much.”

Also new this year, the committee has brought in a number of martial arts demonstrations, authentic arts and crafts exhibitions, vendors, and performing arts groups, both local and internationally-renowned.  Co-chair Doris Asano noted that Kat McDowell will be performing live at this year’s event.  “We’re so pleased to have Kat McDowell on the bill this year.  Kat was born in Tokyo and raised in New Zealand.  Her performance will add a contemporary and vibrant component that will draw in a younger audience.”

Stay posted to AZMatsuri.org for entertainment updates.

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