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Japanese Culture Blossomed in Seattle

School of Taiko and members together on stage.
Rakugo performer Kanariya Eiraku<br >performs his English Rakugo
Fujima Fujimine Ensemble performs on stage
Tea ceremony demonstration
Director Masanori Baba appears in the festival for the screening of Seeds The Life of<br >the Rice King and His Kin
The Japan Foundations<br >travel exhibit Yakishime premiers<br >in Seattle The exhibit will continue through May 1
Nago Midori and Utako Ishikawa from Okinawa on stage
Community members join an effor t on the KumamotoOita earthquake relief
Seattle Japanese Language school students sing songs on stage
Local artists including Aki Sogabe and Midori Kono Thiel are featured at the festival
A festival food stand sells Sushi Burritos
Seattle Seido Karate demonstrates on stage
Amira Abdel Fat tah a Gar f ield High School seninior wins the Level 4 speech division in the 33rd Annual Washington State Japanese Speech Skit Contest last Friday
Pacif ic Nor thwest Kendo Federation on stage Photo by Eugene Tagawa
Budokan Dojo demonstrates on stage

By The North American Post Staff

The 41st Seattle Cherry Blossom & Japanese Cultural Festival drew thousands of visitors from the Greater Seattle area to experience the culture of the Japanese and Japanese American community.

The festival featured dozens of community, cultural
and food booths, educational programs through film screening and lectures and stage performances. Guests to the event included English Rakugo performer Kanariya Eiraku and his troupe, Minori Nago and Utako Ishikawa of the Okinawa musical and dance performers, Masanori Baba, director of the Koda Farm
documentary “Seeds – The Life of the Rice King and His Kin” and Wesley Julian and Daniel Martin of Great East Japan Earthquake documentary “113 Project.”

The Japan Foundation also premiered its new travel exhibit “Yakishime – Earth Metamorphosis” in Seattle.

The festival reception was held on April 22 at the Seattle Center and hosted by the Consulate General of Japan in Seattle. Takeyuki Suetsugu of Bistro Satsuma received a certificate from Japan`s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries as a new Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador. Oshu Go, who has worked to strengthen economic ties between Japan and Washington State as a Port of Seattle staff, was also awarded the Consul General’s Commendation.