SAN FRANCISCO — The 2013 Oshogatsu Festival, celebrating the Year of the Snake, will be held on Saturday, Jan. 12, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Japanese Cultural and Community Center of Northern California, 1840 Sutter St. (between Buchanan and Webster) in Japantown.

Every year, the festival features free arts and crafts activities for children, mochitsuki (rice pounding), ozoni (traditional New Year’s soup), food for sale, an art contest for children, and entertainment, including taiko, Japanese classical dance, and martial arts.

Get a cool Year of the Snake design by Wes Senzaki printed on your T-shirt — bring a shirt or purchase a blank at the event. This has been a tradition for more than 30 years.

This free event is sponsored by API Legal Outreach, JCCCNC, Japanese Community Youth Council, Cherry Blossom Festival, Hamilton Senior Center, and the National Japanese American Historical Society.

Volunteers are welcome to help with set-up, clean-up, and some of the activities during the day. Monetary donations are also needed to support the festival as well as prize donations for the children’s art contest winners.

For more information, call API Legal Outreach at (415) 567-6255.

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