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Kinserfest to showcase international music, dance

By: Bill Charles

Date Posted: 2008-09-19

Southern country, Okinawa reggae and rhythm and blues music will share the spotlight with sunshine over the island this weekend as Camp Kinser opens its gates to the public for the annual Kinserfest.

Opening Saturday for a two-day run as Typhoon Sinlaku tucks tail and moves on to the north, Kinserfest will bring music, dance, Eisa and martial arts demonstrations to the community at the base in Urasoe City. Camp Kinser opens its gates to the military and civilian communities Saturday 1 p.m. to 10 p.m., and on Sunday 1 p.m.to 10 p.m.

Aside from the music and free entertainment, Marine Corps Community Services will insure a variety of game booths, Kiddie Land and many food booths. American pizza, always a top attraction, will be available again this year. As with all MCCS festivals, visitors will also have a chance at winning giveaways and prizes offered by sponsors.

Entertainment kicks off Saturday at 3:10 p.m. with martial arts karate experts Byakuren Kaikan and Chijinshu Wakatida. NTwine cranks up the music beginning at 4:30 p.m., followed by the official opening ceremonies with the Camp Kinser commander.

“This event is a special cultural exchange,” says Colonel Thomas A. Gorry, the Camp Kinser Camp Commander, “where Americans and our Okinawan neighbors share unique aspects of their cultures such as taiko drumming, yakitori, and Okinawan reggae.”

T-da Dance presents hip-hop dance at 6 p.m., followed by Tahitian dance with Tiare Heipua at 6:35 p.m. Dave Ralston Band keeps the music flowing with a concert at 7:15 p.m. The Brenda Vaughn Band, a Tokyo-based rhythm and blues band, performs at 8:15 p.m., with NTwine returning for the evening encore at 9:15 p.m.

Japanese Taiko launches the center stage entertainment Sunday, with Asatoko Hedeko Taiko Studio performing at 3:05 p.m. Kentucky Rain featuring Brian Hill, a Southern Country band, gets the musical blood flowing at 3:55 p.m. What’s Up AKEMI dance school keeps the toes tapping with a hip-hop performance at 4:45 p.m. A game show, Deal or No Deal, entertains at 5:45 p.m., followed at 6:30 p.m. by Gusukuma Seinenkai Eisa.

Okinawa’s Reggae Duo U-Dou & Platy performs at 7:05 p.m. Sunday winds down with The Brenda Vaughn Band at 8 p.m. and NTwine at 9 p.m.

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