Audience members play the taiko drums at the 2018 JANM Natsumatsuri. (MARIO GERSHOM REYES/Rafu Shimpo)

The Japanese American National Museum (JANM) is proud to announce the in-person return of the Natsumatsuri Festival on Saturday, Aug. 13, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

JANM’s annual summer celebration features cultural performances, crafts, and activities for families and kids of all ages. Natsumatsuri is free but RSVPs are requested.

The festivities include dynamic drumming from Makoto Taiko, music from Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles, interactive storytimes led by authors and librarians, tanzaku bamboo wish tree, traditional Bon odori dance lessons, Obon festival-themed origami, crafts to celebrate the summer, a festival-themed photo booth, a scavenger hunt for prizes, exclusive benefits for JANM members, free admission to see the exhibitions “Be Here/1942: A New Lens on the Japanese American Incarceration” and “Sutra & Bible: Faith and the Japanese American World War II Incarceration,” and much more.

JANM will be posting select performances and activities on the museum’s YouTube channel, @janmdotorg, and Instagram, @jamuseum, throughout the day. For more details and to RSVP, visit  

Natsumatsuri is sponsored by MUFG Union Bank, N.A., the Nissan Foundation, and American Honda Co., Inc. This program is also made possible in part by a grant from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. Media sponsor: The Rafu Shimpo.

“Our Natsumatsuri family festival brings multiple generations together to explore Japanese American culture, foster community connections, and learn about the hard-fought lessons accrued from Japanese American history,” said Ann Burroughs, president and CEO. “Through our public programs and family festivals, we empower the public to deepen their understanding of one another’s cultures and unite to create a more just America and a better world.”

JANM is located at First Street and Central Avenue in Little Tokyo.

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