Above and below: The ondo attracted dancers from community centers and Buddhist temples around Los Angeles and Orange counties.
Tom Yokoyama has served as emcee for the festival’s outdoor activities for many years. He is the father of Cerritos City Councilmember Frank Yokoyama, who also attended the festival.

The Southeast Japanese School and Community Center in Norwalk held its 60th annual Cultural Festival and Ondo on June 10 and 11.

The event featured games for kids and bingo for adults; food, including udon, sushi, corn on the cob, teriyaki chicken, Okinawan dango, wonton, and shave ice; judo and kendo demonstrations; ukulele and koto music; hula dancing; drumming by Hikari Taiko; performances by gakuen students; an ikebana exhibit; a karaoke open mic; a silent auction; a raffle; a white elephant sale; and ondo dancing.

The festival features performances of “Soran Bushi,” a fisherman’s dance.
SEJSCC President Richard Shinomoto receives a proclamation commemorating the festival’s 60th anniversary from Lauren Yokomizo, field deputy for Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn. Originally known as Norwalk Gakuen, the SEJSCC will mark its centennial in 2025.
Koto concert in the gym.
Hikari Taiko performed and also kept the beat during the ondo.
Above and below: The festival featured ukulele music and hula dancing.
Festival favorites were served indoors and outdoors.
Above and below: The festival offered a variety of games for kids and bingo for adults.

Photos by J.K. YAMAMOTO/Rafu Shimpo

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