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Ryukyu Minzoku Festival accents cultural heritage

Date Posted: 2007-10-18

Celebration of Okinawa’s culture and traditions dating back to the Ryukyu Kingdom era is the theme for next week’s Ryukyu Minzoku Festival in Naha City.

The three-day festival will be held at Omoromachi Fountain Park located behind the San-A Main Place DFS shopping center on Oct. 26th~28th. Access to the festival grounds is free, but those wanting to sit on reserved seats with the best view of the shows are asked to purchase tickets that cost \1000. Tickets for Kuroshio Banquet, the grand finale of the festival on Sunday at Omoromachi location cost \2,000.

The events at the Omoromachi Fountain Park will run 5 ~ 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, (Oct 26 & 27), and from 2~8 p.m. on Sunday. The Ryukyu Oyaji Rock Contest at Onoyama Park will run 1~8 p.m. both on Saturday and Sunday.

This fourth annual Ryukyu Minzoku Festival offers traditional entertainment, and organizers say their goal is to promote harmony, friendship and peace with people of all nations. A World Flag Festival contest will take place on Sunday at Omoromachi Oharappa Park from 2 to 5:30 p.m. followed by a flag parade from 6 p.m., drawing attention to a world united. A World Dance Festival is set for Saturday the 27th, also at Omoromachi Fountain Park.

The festival spills over to Onoyama park Saturday and Sunday for a Ryukyu Oyaji Rock Contest. Bands will perform 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. both days. A minimum of three members is required per band, with all members 35 years of age or older (‘Oyaji’ means ‘Old Man’). Ten bands will be on stage each day.

The Churasan Carnival, a children’s festival, takes place at Omoromachi Sunday the 28th from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. The Ryukyu Minzoku Festival wraps up Sunday with a parade through the Omoromachi area 6 p.m. ~ 8 p.m.

There is no free parking at or near the festival grounds in Omoromachi. Visitors are urged to use bus or monorail public transportation, or take taxis.

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