Kites to fill skies at Bios Park during New Year holidays

Bios Park is a popular destination for families during the New Year holidays.

Bios Park is a popular destination for families during the New Year holidays.

Japanese people have had an on-going love affair with kites ever since Buddhist missionaries introduced them to Japan sometime during the seventh or eight century.

Although the Japanese absorbed much of the Chinese culture as it was, regarding kites they rather quickly developed their own distinctive designs and uses for them. Almost as soon as they were introduced to them, people started putting them into practical use in construction of many shrines and temples. Large kites were used to lift tiles and other construction materials up to workers on the high rooftops.

Father and son get ready to launch their kite at Bios Park.

Father and son get ready to launch their kite at Bios Park.

In old times people used to fly kites for boys for celebration of their birth and making a wish for their health during the New Year celebrations. Congratulatory kites are still given to first born sons in some regions, although when flying the kites these days, it does not matter whether they were made for boys or girls, people just enjoy to fly them as a typical children’s play during the New Years.

Bios Park in the Kadekaru area of Ishikawa is organizing a kite making and flying event during the New Year holidays Jan. 1st through 3rd, where anyone can experience one of the best ways to spend Japanese traditional New Year with one’s children. The program consists of a kite-making workshop, and after making yours, you can fly it in the park. Those who do not want to take the workshop can rent a kite.

Another youngster ready for kite lift-off.

Another youngster ready for kite lift-off.

The workshops take place from Jan. 1 to 3, and the only cost in addition to admission to the park is ¥500 which covers the cost of the materials.

Bios Park presents a traditional New Year Ryukyu Dance performance on all three days at the entrance of the Bios Park. The show consists of about 10-minute performance starting 8:50 in the morning, just before the opening the park. Admission is free.

Admission to the Bios Park is ¥710 for adults and children of high school and junior high school age. Entrance for children from 4-year-old through elementary students cost ¥360

The park also offers pleasure boat rides on a lake in the park, water buffalo cart rides and rental canoes for an extra fee. Information on Bios Park is available in Japanese, English, Chinese and Korean on the park’s website.