JASDFW Celebrates Tanabata

What is Tanabata?

Tanabata Matsuri, also known as the Star Festival, is one of dozens of summer festivals celebrated across Japan each year and is celebrated either on July 7th or August 7th. The history of Tanabata in Japan goes back over a thousand years to a Chinese legend. The festival commemorates the folktale of two star-crossed lovers, Princess Orihime and cowherder Hikoboshi, who can only meet each other once a year at the Milky Way.

How to Celebrate?

In Japan, Tanabata is celebrated by covering public and private areas with colorful decorations. One of the most common decorations is called Tanzaku, which are pieces of colored paper with written wishes on them.

Out of all the Tanabata festivals across Japan, the most well-attended one is in Sendai, Dallas’ sister city. The Sendai Tanabata festival draws visitors from all over with its delicious street food, live performances, firework display, and an enormous number of decorations.

This year the Japan-America Society of Dallas/Fort-Worth is excited to present the story of Tanabata on our YouTube channel. To learn more about the history of Tanabata, view pictures of these beautiful festivals, and watch a kamishibai performance of the love story between Orihime and Hikoboshi, follow the video below.

How to Decorate?

To learn how to make some of the colorful decorations that fill homes and streets in Japan, follow the instructions on the PDF below. Like with any festival, have fun!



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