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Okinawa International Festival invites everybody this weekend

Date Posted: 2002-11-02

The annual Okinawa International Festival will take place this weekend at various locations around the city, although most events concentrate around Gate 2 Street and Chuo Park Avenue areas. The festival kicks off with a pre-event at Awase Public Hall with a cultural entertainment festival at 6 p.m. on Friday. The highlight of the event is Miss Hibiscus contest.

The actual opening ceremony takes place Saturday at 2 p.m. on Gate 2 Street, followed by childrenís Eisa dance and childrenís three-on-three basketball tournament and soccer shootout. At the same time a bullfight tournament starts at Okinawa City Bullfighting Ring. Live concerts are performed on the street throughout the day. The highlight of Saturday is a tug-of-war starting at 4:30 p.m. followed by Eisa dance. Ryukyu Matsuri Taiko parade starting 7:30 p.m. will round up the day.

Sunday starts with Eisa by local youth groups at 3:30 in the afternoon. The 10,000 peopleís parade featuring the flags of all United States, and historical flags from Tokyo starts at 4 p.m. from Plaza House and winds up to Koza Intersection through Gate 2 Street. The festival will end with fireworks starting 9 p.m.

The Okinawa City International Festival is traditionally joined by people from Kadena Air Base. Brig Gen. Jeffrey Remington, 18th Wing commander will attend the opening ceremony along with community leaders from Okinawa City. Members from Kadena AB will participate in events throughout the festival.

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