The 13th annual Japan Fair was held on Sunday, March 19, 2023 at Ngarachamayong Cultural Center in cooperation with Palau Visitors Authority. In the welcoming remarks, Ms. HAGIWARA Mayu, Embassy’s Charge d’ Affaires ad interim expressed the gratitude that we were able to host the 13th Japan Fair in person after 2 years since Covid-19 hit this country, and thanked the performers and participants to the Japan Fair. Minister of Education, Dr. Dale Jenkins also made remarks mentioning the importance of the opportunities like the Japan Fair to experience different cultures.
The stage performance opened with a breathtaking ikebana (flower arrangement) performance by Ms. Koen Yokoi, who came to Palau all the way from Japan for this event. She made a big flower arrangement using Japanese sakura (cherry blossoms) to express the friendship and peace between Japan and Palau.
Following the ikebana performance, Japanese Language School of Palau, Palau Judo Federation and JICA presented amazing performances.
A short video about artist HIJIKATA Hisakatsu and his legacy was shown to the audience while an exhibition about his art was open at a small hall at the venue.
Palau Sailing Association and Japan and Palau Youth Sailing Club presented the activities of sailing club.
The final performer was the Palau High School Theater and Arts Club. 10 students performed a kimono show with a catchy Japanese song.
In addition to the variety of stage performances, there were booths to experience Japanese culture such as yukata try-on (summer kimono), origami (art of folding paper) and the calligraphy or shodo booth had a selection of kanji characters with its meaning for writing names. Japanese traditional toys such as kendama were also available for everyone to try. Besides these fun activities, ikebana workshop, the exhibition of an OP dinghy, oshiruko demonstration and tasting and HIJIKATA Hisakatsu’s art exhibition were also taken place.
We hope that the Japan Fair contributed to better understanding of our commonly shared culture and enhancing the good relations between Japan and Palau.
Next year, 2024 is the year of the 30th anniversary of Japan and Palau’s diplomatic relationship and the next Japan Fair will come back with more fun performances and activities.