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Concerts galore this summer at Sun Marina Resort

By: Kenny Ehman

Date Posted: 1998-07-24

Thousands of people flooded the Sun Marina Resort on Sunday, July 19 to see Okinawa's own latino pop group, Diamantes. The band continued to show their popularity by drawing many new fans as well as old ones. Their powerful live performance helped to start off Sun Marina's annual "Summer Illusion" with a bang.

Concert fans can look forward to more great music and plenty of fun for the next two weekends at the well known resort. "Summer Illusion" is known for drawing huge crowds and giving some of the best live stage performances year after year. This year will be no exception. Three more concerts are scheduled to take place, starting with the "Folk Festival 98" on July 25 at 5 pm. It will feature many of the top folk musicians from around Japan. Fans can expect to see Shozo Ise, Junko Yamamoto, and Akira Inaba among some of the other fine folk singers that will participate in this year's concert. Tickets are currently being sold for 4,500 in advance and for 5,000 at the door.

The day after the Folk Festival, Sunday, July 26, Sun Marina will host one of Okinawa's premier events. Thousands of reggae fans are expected to crowd the resort's outdoor field for "Japan Splash 98". Even if you are not a big fan of reggae, this concert is definitely a crowd pleaser. Tourists from mainland Japan make the trip to Okinawa annually just to attend this blowout concert. Many Okinawans that have attended the "Japan Splash" in the past feel that it is one of Okinawa's most liveliest concerts, and promoters are expecting the popularity to continue with this year's show. Scheduled to perform are Buju Banton, Judy Mowatt, General Degree, Wayne Wonder, Red Rat, and Jahmali. Tickets can be bought in advance for 6,500 at several different outlets, or they can be purchased at the door for 7,000. The concert begins at 3:30 pm and gates will open at 2:30 pm.

Both concerts are being promoted by PM Agency and the Sun Marina Resort. Large crowds are expected, so it is advised to get there early.

Sunday, August 2 will close out the series of concerts with Sun Marina's final day of "Summer Illusion". Two free concerts will take place , with "Over" taking the stage at 7 pm, followed by Maria Howell at 8 pm. "Over' will provide music fans with some soft sounds during the night, while Maria Howell will add a nice blend of blues and jazz. Howell, who currently lives on Okinawa, holds an impressive resume, working with such well known artists as George Benson, Ray Charles, and Ronnie Laws. Her music has been highly acclaimed by many in the music industry, and she has started to make a name for herself here in Japan.

Following the back to back stage performances by "Over' and Howell will be an impressive fireworks show. You won't want to miss the action these next few weekends at Sun Marina. You can spend the day at their beach swimming and relaxing, and then attend one of the shows later.

Sun Marina is located on Highway 58 in Onna son. To get there simply head north from Kadena. After passing the Renaissance Resort and Moon Beach, Sun Marina will be the next big resort on your left. For more information on Summer Illusion call 965-2222. For more ticket information on the Folk Festival and Japan Splash call PM Agency at 898-1331.

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