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Two bon dances this weekend

LIHU‘E — There will be two bon dance celebrations this weekend.

Originally scheduled on the Kaua‘i Buddhist Council calendar of bon dance, the Waimea Shingon Mission will host its celebrations on Friday and Saturday at its Waimea Valley temple.

The second bon dance is being hosted by Yamaguchi Prefectural University via Zoom on Saturday, starting at 3 p.m. Hawai‘i Standard Time.

“You can do the bon dance sitting in the comfort of your living room, perhaps eating your homemade flying saucers and andagi,” said Cheryl Shintani, president of Kaua‘i Yamaguchi Kenjin Kai.

The free bon dance will feature instruction by Japanese dance instructor Jukanfuku Hanayagi, of the Nihon Buyo Ginsenkai Dance Association, and a short lecture on how to dance during the “Feel Yamaguchi Bon Dance WS from Yamaguchi, Japan.”

“Yamaguchi City is finally holding the City Bon Dance event again after three years, and we will be sending a team of 40 or more students and teachers to dance down the covered arcade,” said Amy Wilson, the Global Center director at the Yamaguchi Prefectural University and professor of intellectural studies.

“While the event was canceled for several years, we had several international online bon dance events online which were very popular, so we are doing this event again to catch up with all of you online, and give people participating in the dance a chance to participate. Please join us to learn about Yamaguchi City’s Lord Ouchi Bon Dance and enjoy some international exchange with us.”

For more information, or to participate, visit

Because the Japan bon dance takes place on Saturday, bon dance fans can enjoy the Waimea Shingon Mission bon dance that starts with bon service at 6 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday.

Special intermission entertainment will include Taiko Kaua‘i in its final bon dance season performance on Friday night, and the youth of Tsunami Taiko performing for the Saturday night audience.

“Rev. Kohtoku Hirao’s wife Michiko loves curry,” said Diane Nitta of Taiko Kaua‘i. “She might be persuaded to do some special curry dishes for the food booth.”

Those will join the plate lunch offerings of a nishime plate and a pork plate. Other items at the food booth will include flying saucers and yakitori (chicken) sticks.

Bon dancing at the Waimea Shingon Mission is scheduled to start from 7:30 p.m. on both days.


Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 808-245-0453 or
Source: The Garden Island

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