Obon Fest

Editor's Pick
Saturday, Aug. 3, 2024
2 p.m.–9 p.m.
3720 SE 34th Ave
Portland, OR 97202

The following description was submitted by the event organizer.

ObonFest (Obon) is a summertime Japanese and Japanese-American memorial festival commemorating one’s ancestors reflectively and joyfully. Lanterns are hung, Bon Odori (Obon dancing) is performed, memorial visits are made, and food is offered at home butsudans and temples.

Central to ObonFest is Bon Odori (Obon Dancing). These festive community dances invite everyone to celebrate and pay tribute to ancestors and those family members who have recently passed. Experienced Bon Odori dancers lead the group, and all are encouraged to participate. Obon is for everyone:  families, Buddhists, non-Buddhists, Japanese Americans and people from all backgrounds.

Oregon Buddhist Temple has been hosting the only Obon Festival in the region for over 60 years. Obon festivals are memorial celebrations held during summers in Japan and in Japanese heritage communities worldwide.

At the festival, attendees will find their favorite Japanese street foods, gifts, crafts, colorful Japanese dress (yukatas and happi coats), music by Portland Taiko and Bon Odori Dance — to observe and join in until the sun goes down.