Japan Fest welcomes all this weekend

One of the most colorful and unique festivals in the Northwest suburbs opens Saturday: Japan Festival 2010.

The festival has become a summer staple at the Forest View Educational Center, 1212 S. Goebbert Road in Arlington Heights, featuring the best in Japanese music, dance, martial arts, cultural displays, food and a special kids' corner.

Hours are 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on Saturday, June 26, and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, June 27.

Highlights are:

• Demonstrations and lectures by the director and three master traditional Japanese craftsmen from the Future-Applied Conventional Technology Center in Kyoto.

• A Japanese autoharp (taishogoto) group from Kyoto, Taishogoto Koto-Sanga, will play Japanese music with the Chicago Shinobue (Japanese Flute) group.

• Two entertainment stages feature Koto, Taiko drum groups, classical Japanese dance, Okinawa Taiko Drums and Dances, Japanese Folk Dances, martial arts of aikido, judo and more.

• Cultural Exhibition Halls: Ikebana (Japanese flower arrangements); Miyuki Art Flowers; Katana (Japanese swords); Chano-Yu (tea ceremony); Shodo (Japanese calligraphy).

• Taste of Japan (always the center of attraction) with sushi, chicken teriyaki and more.

• Marketplace (arts and crafts): Handicrafts, cards, Japanese books, fabric crafts and kimono.

• Information tables will be staffed by travel agents and other Japanese representatives, including Kyoto.

For details, visit

Kyudo, or The Way of the Bow, is the practice of Japanese archery. Daily Herald file photo