GUADALUPE — Guadalupe Buddhist Church’s annual Obon Festival will be held on Sunday, July 31, from 12 to 5 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Cultural Center, 313 W. Tunnell St. in Santa Maria.
The Obon Festival an annual Buddhist event held to commemorate one’s ancestors. It is believed that each year during Obon, the ancestors’ spirits return to this world in order to visit their relatives.
Open to everyone of all ages, the festival will feature bonsai and martial arts demonstrations, and taiko drumming, with the highlight being the Obon dancing, which all are welcome to participate in, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
(The last dance practice will be on Wednesday, July 27, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Bring your towels, fans and kachi-kachis. Refreshments will be served.)
Traditional Japanese food as well as some local favorites such as udon, sushi, teriyaki chicken dinner with rice and edamame ($10), kushiyaki, won ton, and strawberry shortcake will be available.
There will be a free fun interactive arts and crafts area for the kids with everything from origami to face-painting, along with handmade items for purchase.
Admission and parking are free. Raffle tickets are $5. First prize is $1,500 cash.
For advance purchase of dinner or raffle tickets, contact: Alice Maxon, (805) 714-6410; Sophie Shimizu, (805) 448-6294; or GuadalupeBuddhistChurch@gmail.com. For more information, visit www.guadalupebuddhistchurch.com.