Dancers at the Santa Barbara Obon in 2013. (MARIO G. REYES/Rafu Shimpo)

SANTA BARBARA — Buddhist Church of Santa Barbara, 1015 E. Montecito St. in Santa Barbara, will hold its annual Obon Festival on Saturday, July 18, from 12:30 to 5 p.m.

Everyone is welcome to join in the Bon dance, which starts at 2 p.m. No experience necessary. The final practice will be held on Friday, July 17, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

The festival will also feature taiko drumming, a karate demonstration, a Buddhist service, origami, games, a Japanese craft sale, ikebana, bonsai and more.

Bento lunch boxes from Studio Nihon, a Santa Barbara-based Japanese cooking class and catering company, are $8. Choice of chicken or vegetarian. Advance orders are recommended; email or visit

Admission is free. For more information, call (805) 962-3633, email or visit

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