Kanna Dam’s the place to be Sunday

Families enjoy live performance at Kanna Dam Park.

Many enjoy canoeing on the calm waters of the dam.

There’s only one Okinawa festival taking place in the shadow of a dam, and Sunday Ginoza Village is inviting the public to join the 21st Kanna Dam Festival, a day-long excursion filled with experience-based events.

Admission is free to the festival at Kanna Dam Park Map: https://goo.gl/maps/xaBQi.  The festival runs 10 a.m. ~ 5 p.m., with be canoeing, windmill making, sandal carving, Nordic walks, ShiShi painting, horseback riding, observations of Kanna Dam, Chinensis planting, a Kanna Dam nature tour, wood

Hands-on wood cutting is also in the program.

cutting and much more.  A range of events are planned for both adults and children, with some having special participation fees.

It’s a quiet place to spend time with the family. Kanna Dam Family Park is located right next to the Kanna Dam in Ginoza Village, not too far north from Camp Hansen. It’s fairly a large park with open green fields, and a large frog pond lies northeast of the main park area.

Ginoza Village stages this festival called the “Kanna Dam Matsuri” or appropriately, The Kanna Dam Festival. The park is quiet for the most part, perhaps because of its location, which makes it all the better. The park is great place to take a group to play soccer, baseball, football, and of course, have ‘bento’ meal for lunch near the large shaded pavilion or under one of the small trees.

Younger children enjoy splashing in a shallow pool in the park.

The park has a little man-made fountain and pool area for kids to play in, and it is also great place to take bikes and have kids ride around without having to worry so much about traffic. Other than during this festival, the park is very quiet and serene.

The park has soda machines and a small bathroom area. Getting there is easy: The turn-off to the Kanna Dam Park is right off Highway 329. You may end up seeing some other points of interest.

The Kanna Dam festival attracts some of the finest Okinawan minyo (folk music) bands and singers on the island. Far from any major city, parking is no problem on the acres of well-manicured grounds surrounding the dam. Local farmers and fishermen provide charcoal-grilled chicken and fish, as well as drinks, at bargain prices.