The Japanese Cultural Festival returns for the 22nd year to Esquimalt in a new location

Residents are ready to say konnichiwa once again at an in-person Japanese cultural fair, with the 22nd event scheduled for August 27 at the new Esquimalt Gorge Park Pavilion.

The pavilion is important to the area’s Japanese community, according to Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society President Tsugio Kurushima. The new pavilion was built near a site where the Takata family operated a garden and teahouse from 1907 until the family was uprooted and sent to an internment camp during World War II.

“It’s exciting for us to be back in person for the first time in three years and to mark this return to such an important place for the Japanese community,” Kurushima said in a statement. “We return stronger than ever with our normal mix of culture, traditional arts, local history and Japanese delicacies.”

The festival will include activities and performances showcasing a wide range of Japanese culture, from tea ceremony demonstrations and a performance by popular drumming group Uminari Taiko, to a lecture on fermentation and Japanese cuisine.

There will also be a guided tour of the Takata Garden a short walk from the park. The festival takes place on Saturday, August 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Parking is available on site, but visitors are encouraged to walk, cycle, or take public transportation.

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CultureEsquimaltJapanese Canadians

Darcy J. Skinner