PENANG FESTIVAL - Bon Odori




Penang - Bon Odori Festival Celebration At The Esplanade - 19 July 2014

This  is a Japanese cultural festival which involves traditional and merry-making dance and lively drum performances to welcome the home coming of ancestral spirits.  It is traditional belief by the Japanese that the spirits of the deceased ancestors would return once a year to visit their families. And Bon Odori is a traditional Japanese Dance.

 

penang festival - bon odori celebration in penang Bon Odori Festival is jointly organised by the both the local Japanese community and Penang Tourism department and the festive celebration is held every year at the Esplanade field, located at Jalan Padang Kota Lama, Georgetown. The festival initially started on a minor scale in 1987 before expanding into a large scale annual event in 1997, after close collaboration with the Consulate-General of Japan.

The atmosphere at the Esplanade will be fun-filled with stalls selling various types of local and Japanese food, handicrafts and souvenirs, games, firework displays. Traditional Japanese and local cultural dance performances and music creates a colourful carnival-like and merry atmosphere of a mini 'Land of the Rising Sun' at the Esplanade. The ladies will be dressed in casually in stylish summer kimono (Yukata costume) and wearing Japanese wooden clogs (known as geta), while the men are clothed in their short robes complete with shorts or pants and other traditional dressing attires of Japan during Bon Odori festive nite.

 

 

The major events included behind the traditional drum beating background music are delicious sampling of various Japanese food delights from sushi and tempura to tako balls and some local cuisines which are sold at the 60 food stalls set up there;  traditional game stalls for games like scooping of goldfish ( kingyo-sukui ) where participants will scoop up the goldfish into a bowl using a plastic frame with a piece of paper as the net (poi) and the water balloon fishing ( yoyo tsuri ) where players are given a metal hook to fish the water balloons out; the thrilling ghost house (obake yashiki) which is divided into the black monster (yokai) course and the red hell (jigoku) course. Brightly illuminated fireworks are lighted up in spectacular over the Esplanade field to mark the culmination of Bon Odori before the event comes to an end. 

 

Penang Travel Tips:

The Esplanade is located just next to 'Fort Cornwallis' , which was built by Captain Francis Light after landing in Penang. The field is facing the seafront at Jalan Padang Kota Lama, George Town Penang.

Public Bus Transport : 

'Rapid Penang' bus route number :103 , 204 , 502 , 10 ,  CAT ( Free City Shuttle Bus)

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