The 23rd Bon Odori (Japanese Dance) Festival, Charlotte NC
Downtown Wachovia Atrium, 435 S.Tryon Street,
August 4th, 2007, 11am – 5pm

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Japan National Tourist Organization (JNTO) and Amnet booth

At our booth you could have collected JNTO’s Japan travel information:
Bamboo web leafet
Yokoso! Japan leaflet
Affordable Japan
Kyoto leaflet

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Shodo (Tea Ceremony)

This is the first time Amnet New York has set out in the field by setting up a promotional booth in North Carolina. This bon odori is the largest festival in North Carolina. Not only did Japanese people attend, but many international individuals gathered at this event. Some attendees drove four hours from Atlanta to participate. Many Americans looked forward to this annual festival. In addition to bon odori, there are cultural activities and shops such as, sado (tea ceremony), ikebana (flower arrangement), origami, shodou (calligraphy), kingyo sukui (kingyo- gold fish, sukui- scoop-up; photos and description by a JETAA), yo-yo sukui (scoop-up; similar to kingyo sukui), second-hand books crafts and masks. Natives who attended this Southern festival observed the intertwining of old and new Japan. I was most delighted when I saw sushi and obentou (lunch box) because it reminded me of home.

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Main Stage

Bon odori and new wave music of wadaiko (traditional drum) and synthesizer were performed on the main stage. All the Americans and Japanese were thrilled to see this blend of traditional and new music. The bon odori incorporated 500 years of long-established Japanese collective history, which was introduced deep Japanese culture to the pubic. As for the climax, there was a sweepstakes with the first prize being a round-trip ticket from U.S. to Japan. Amnet provided a domestic round-trip ticket for the finale. This event took place because of committed volunteer work from the Japanese community and local corporations in North Carolina area. Amnet looks forward and hopes to attend this wonderful, cultural festival in 2008.

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Tad Isozumi
Amnet
(Original text translated Japanese to English by JNTO)

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