Japan Day

by Joseph McKeown

Established in 2007, Japan Day in Central Park is an annual springtime event that celebrates Japanese culture with New Yorkers. Starting with a Japan Run (which my girlfriend ran) and the Kids' Race (which I tried to run) the event provides food and activity tents as well as both traditional and contemporary performances in the bandshell, including samurai sword fighting. When the line to try on the yukatas (which are similar to kimonos) was too long, I went instead to the calligraphy tent, where a lovely woman wrote my name in Japanese. Then I had some sake and listened to some incredible Taiko drumming. And then we had some more sake. Arigato-Gozaimasu!