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Yuletide Season officially under way on Okinawa

By: By Bill Charles

Date Posted: 2009-12-11

Cheerleaders, numerous bands and singers offering up Christmas carols, international foods and a laser light show are on the marquee for this year’s Courtney Christmas and Holiday Festival.

The two-day introduction to the festive season begins Saturday afternoon and runs through Sunday at Camp Courtney Commissary Area. Pop carolers kick off the season off at one o’clock with a concert, followed by the Kids Carnival with Tamanchu Hiroto, Mikey Clowns, Santa and Balloons by Allen. The Kids Carnival includes juggling, clowns on stilts, Santa and gifts, and Face Painting and Balooons.

Courtney’s Christmas and Holiday Festival offers traditional festival foods, including crispy fried chicken, pizza, burgers, and also a variety of Okinawan foods, including yakitori, takoyaki and more.

The Ryujin Mabuya Show is on stage at 2:30 p.m., followed by the Commander’s remarks at 3 p.m. Ryujin Mabuya Meet and Greet is at 3:10 p.m., followed by Chijinshu Wakatida Eisa at 3:40 p.m. and the What’s Up! Akemi Dance School at 4:30 p.m.
Jazz Band Trinity performs at 5:30 p.m., and variety band Heavensent entertains on stage starting at 6:15 p.m.

The festival opens Sunday at 12:30 p.m., with amusements, Kiddie Land—it’s FREE!—and a last chance to chat with Santa as he makes a stop on the island en route to the North Pole to get everything ready for Christmas. The Pops Carolers lead the crowd with Christmas carols at 1 p.m. and the Kids Carnival makes a return visit to center stage at 1:30 p.m.

Bushigenshin Eisa performance is at 2:30 p.m., TDa Kids Dance offers up hip hop dance kids-style at 3:45 p.m., and the blues-rock sound of the Dave Ralston Band kicks off at 5:15 p.m. Heavensent Band winds up the entertainment Sunday at 6:45 p.m.

The Courtney Christmas and Holiday Festival is offering prize drawing giveaways at 2:15 p.m. on Saturday and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday. Included are chances to win round-trip tickets for two or an upgrade to any UAL gateway city courtesy of United Airlines and Omega World Travel.

Admission is FREE. No pets, backpacks, or outside alcohol will be allowed.

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