Seattle is home to 7th largest Japanese-American community in the United States with over 30,000 residents. Japanese immigration into the Seattle community dates back to the mid-1880s and to this day their presence is woven into the fabric of pacific north-western culture. Every year, the Japanese-American community in Seattle celebrate Bon Odori, a traditional summer festival in which the Japanese honor their ancestors who have passed on, remember and appreciate all they have done, and celebrate their ongoing presence in the lives they enjoy today. Also known as Obon, the festival is an official Seafair event held at the Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple. The festival is highlighted by traditional music and street dancing in a giant oval. Many festival attendees can be seen dressed in Japanese kimonos, yukatas, or happi coats. The event also features Japanese food booths and refreshments, taiko and martial arts performances, craft exhibits and demonstrations. The festival is usually held over two days and evenings in mid-July, and is a great opportunity for people from all walks of life to share in the traditions and culture of Japanese-Americans living in Seattle.
For more information visit: Seattle Buddhist Temple website