CULTURAL AWARENESS AND ADAPTATION
Cultural Awareness and Adaptation

ProgramInformation
Even though Okinawa is a small island prefecture, the Ryukyu culture is truly unique and captivating. Taking opportunities to learn about local history and traditions can be both enriching and engaging. MCCS Marine & Family Programs - Resources offer a full range of workshops and classes to help with adaptation to your new environment and make the most of your tour on Okinawa. From traditional Okinawa arts and crafts to language and cooking classes, our Cultural Team is here to help you make Okinawa home.

Off-base cultural events taking place during January-February 2019


Shuri Castle New Year’s Ceremony 
Shuri Castle, Naha City  
8:30 am - 5:00 pm, 1  - 3 January  
Admission: Adults - ¥820 / High School - ¥660 
Elementary/Jr. High School - ¥310 / 5 years old & younger - Free


Kanucha Resort Stardust Fantasia Kanucha Resort Hotel, Nago City  
6:00 pm - 11:00 pm, 1 January - 14 February  
(Last admission 10:30 pm)


Kariyushi Dream Fantasy 
Okinawa Kariyushi Beach Resort Ocean Spa, Onna Village

Sunset - Midnight, 1 January - 28 February   


Tonan Night Decoration 
Southeast Botanical Gardens, Okinawa City 
5:00 pm  - 10:00, 1 January - 31 March  
Admission: Adults: ¥1800  / High School: ¥1000 
Jr. High/Elementary: ¥500 / 6 years old and under: Free

 

Ryukyu Lantern Festival  
Murasakimura, Yomitan Town  
9:00 am - 10:00 pm, 1 January - 3 March 
Admission:  Adults: ¥600  /Junior/High School Students: ¥500 Elementary School Students: ¥400


Nago Cherry Blossom Festival Nago Castle Park, Nago City  
1:30 pm - 8:30 pm, 26 - 27 January 


Motobu Yaedake Cherry Blossom Festival

Sakura no Mori Park, Motobu Town 
21 January - 5 February 


Nakijin Gusuku Cherry Blossom Festival 

Nakijin Castle Ruins, Nakijin Village 
8:00 am - 9:00 pm, 1 - 11 February  
Admission: Adults: ¥400 / High School: ¥300 
Elementary/Jr. High School: ¥300 / 5 years old & younger: Free


Kariyushi Dream Fantasy 
Okinawa Kariyushi Beach Resort Ocean Spa, Onna Village

Sunset - Midnight, 1 January - 28 February  


Ryuku Lantern Festival  
Murasaki Mura, Ryukyu Kingdom Theme Park, Yomitan Town

9:00 am  - 10:00 pm, 1 February - 3 March  
Admission: Adults: ¥600  / Jr High/High School: ¥500 Elementary: ¥400 / Kindergarten and below: Free 


Okinawa Ocean Expo Park Flower Festival

Okinawa Ocean Expo Park, Motobu Town 
8:00 am - 7:00 pm, 1 - 24 February 


Okinawa International Orchid Show 2019 

Okinawa Ocean Expo Park, Motobu Town 
8:30 am-5:30 pm, 2 - 11 February 2019 
Admission: Adults: ¥690 / Elementary/Jr. High School: ¥350  Under 6 years old: Free 



Off-Base Cultural Events during the month of March 2019

 

Ryukyu Lantern Festival 

Murasaki Mura, Ryukyu Kingdom Theme Park, Yomitan Town 9:00 am - 10:00 pm, 1 - 3 March

Admission: Adults: ¥600 / Jr.  & High School: ¥500 Elementary: ¥400 / Kindergarten & below: Free

Lighting hours from 6:00 pm - 10:00 pm

 

Higashi Village Azalea Festival Azalea Garden Villagers’ Forest 

9:00 am - 6:00 pm, 1 - 24 March   

Admission:  Adults: ¥300  

Jr. High school students and under – Free

 

South East Botanical Garden-Lighting 

South East Botanical Garden, Okinawa City 

9:00 am - 10:00 pm, 1 - 31 March  

Admission: Adults: ¥1800 / High School: ¥1000 Elementary/Jr. High School: ¥500 / Under 6 years old: Free

Lighting hours from 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm

 

Whale Watching Tour

1- 31 March

Departs from Naha Miegusuku Port | Hamagawa Fishing Port

Tickets:  Above 12 years old: ¥4500|¥4600 /5 - 11 years old: ¥3500|¥3600 Under 4 years old: ¥1500|¥1500

https://www.cerulean-blue.co.jp/whale-watching-en/

 

Okinawa City Craft Fair

1st - 3rd Floors, Plaza Housing Shopping Center, Okinawa City 10:00 am - 8:00 pm, 14 - 17 March

 

Okinawa Island-wide Pottery Market

Hotel Moon Beach, Onna Village 

10:00 am - 7:00 pm, 22 - 24 March  


Off-Base Cultural Events during the month of April 2019

 

Whale Watching Tour  
1 April - 7 April  
Departs from Naha Miegusuku Port | Hamagawa Fishing Port Tickets:  Above 12 years old: ¥4500|¥4600 / 5 - 11 years old: ¥3500|¥3600  Under 4 years old: ¥1500|Â¥1500 
https://www.cerulean-blue.co.jp/whale-watching-en/ 


Urizun Flower Festival  
Bios on the Hill Okinawa, Uruma City  
9:00 am - 6:00 pm,  1 April - 6 May  
Admissions: Adults: ¥900 / Between 4 - 12 years old: ¥500 


Ryuku Kaiensai  ~ Fireworks 

Ginowan Kaihin Park, Ginowan City  
Opens: 3:30 pm / Starts: 7:30 pm,  13 April  
Adults: ¥3,500   / Elementary-Jr. High Students: ¥2,200  Children under 6 years old: Free 


Ie island Lily Festival 

Ie Island Lily Field Park, Ie Village 

20 April - 6 May 2019 


Craft Fair Nanjo 2019 
Nanjo City Tamagusuku Comprehensive Gymnasium, Nanjo City  10:00 am - 6:00 pm, 27 - 29 April  
Exhibition and selling of Okinawa potteries and dyed products 
















Community relations projects are an excellent way to get your unit or organization involved in the local community. Past COMREL projects have included visits to the Okinawa Children's Development Center, PURE Workshop, and the Senior Citizens Home with activities ranging from grass cutting and cleanup to spending time with residents.

January 1
Japanese New Year ‐ 元日Ganjitsu
This national holiday was established in 1948, as a day to celebrate the new year. New Year's Day marks the beginning of Japan's most important holiday season, the New Year season 正月Shōgatsu , which generally refers to the first one, three or seven days of the year. Although not prescribed by law, many work places are closed from December 29 to January 3. Prior to 1948, New Year'sDay was a national holiday on which the imperial worship ceremony known as ''Shihō‐hai'' 四方拝 took place.


Second Monday of January
Coming of Age Day ‐ 成人の日Seijin no Hi

This national holiday was established in 1948 as a day to congratulate and encourage people who have reached the age of majority (20) during the year. Cities and towns throughout the nation hold ceremonies for these people. Originally held on January 15, in 2000 it was changed to the second Monday of January in accordance with the Happy Monday System.

February 11
National Foundation Day ‐ 建国記念の日Kenkoku Kinen no Hi
This national holiday was established in 1966 (and first held in1967) as a day to reflect on the establishment of the nation and to nourish a love for the country. From 1872 to 1948, February 11 was known as ''Kigen‐setsu'' 紀元節 , a holiday commemorating the day on which-according to the Nihon‐shoki - Emperor Jimmu is said to have acceded the throne in 660 BCE.

Around March 20
Vernal Equinox Day ‐ 春分の日Shunbun no Hi
The vernal equinox generally falls on March 20 or March 21. The exact date of the holiday is announced on the first weekday of February of the previous year. In 2011, the holiday falls on March 21. This national holiday was established in 1948 as a day for the admiration of nature and the love of living things. Prior to 1948,the vernal equinox was an imperial ancestor worship festival called''Shunki kōrei‐sai'' 春季皇霊祭.

April 29
Shōwa Day ‐ 昭和の日 Shōwa no Hi
This national holiday was established in 2007 as a day to reflect on the events of the Shōwa period. As the birthday of Emperor Shōwa, April 29 was originally celebrated as a holiday during his lifetime. (See "The Emperor's Birthday" below.) After the death of the emperor in 1989, the date continued to be a holiday under the new name "Greenery Day". (See below.) In 2007 Greenery Day was moved to May 4, and April 29 took the name "Shōwa Day" in honor of the late Emperor. Shōwa Day marks the start of the Golden Week (Japan) holiday period.

May 3
Constitution Memorial Day ‐ 憲法記念日Kenpō Kinenbi
This national holiday was established in 1948, to commemorate the day on which Japan's postwar Constitution of Japan constitution took effect. Constitution Memorial Day falls during Golden Week (Japan).

May 4
Greenery Day ‐ みどりの日Midori no Hi
This national holiday is celebrated as a day to commune with nature and be grateful for its blessings. Originally established in1989 and held annually on April 29 (the late Shōwa Emperor's birthday), in 2007, Greenery Day was moved to May 4, and April 29 was renamed "Shōwa Day" (see above.) Greenery Day falls during Golden Week (Japan). (From 1986 to 2006, May 4 was a''kokumin no kyūjitsu'' holiday.)

May 5
Children's Day (Japan) Children's Day‐ こどもの日 Kodomo no Hi
This national holiday was established in 1948, as a day on which to esteem the personalities of children and plan for their happiness. It is on this day that the Japanese equivalent of the Dragon Boat Festival 端午の節句 Tango no sekku is held. On this day,families who have a boy in their home may fly koi streamers anddecorate their homes with armor or samurai dolls. Children's Daymarks the end of Golden Week (Japan).

Third Monday of July
Marine Day ‐ 海の日 Umi no Hi
This national holiday was established in 1995 (and first held in1996) as a day of gratitude for the blessings of the oceans and for the prosperity of the maritime nation that is Japan. Originally held on July 20, in 2003 it was changed to the third Monday of July in accordance with the Happy Monday System.

Third Monday of September
Respect‐for‐the‐Aged Day ‐ 敬老の日Keirō no Hi
This national holiday was established in 1966 as a day to respect the elderly and celebrate long life. Originally held on September 15, it originated as a renaming of Old Folks' Day 老人の日Rōjin no hi. In 2003, it was changed to the third Monday of September in accordance with the Happy Monday System.

September 23
Autumnal Equinox Day ‐ 秋分の日Shūbun no Hi
The autumnal equinox generally falls on September 22 or September 23. The exact date of the holiday is announced on the first weekday of February of the previous year.. This national holiday was established in1948 as a day on which to honor one's ancestors and remember the dead. Prior to 1948, the autumnal equinox was an imperial ancestor worship festival called ''Shūki kōrei‐sai'' 秋季皇霊祭.

Second Monday of October
Health and Sports Day ‐ 体育の日Taiiku no Hi
This national holiday was established in 1966 as a day to enjoy sports and cultivate a healthy mind and body. Originally held on October 10 to commemorate the anniversary of the opening ceremony of the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, it was changed to the second Monday of October in 2000 in accordance with the Happy Monday System.

Culture Day ‐ 文化の日 Bunkano Hi
This national holiday was established in 1948. It commemorates the November 3, 1946 announcement of the Constitution of Japan. It is recognized as a day to celebrate peace and freedom and promote culture. (Prior to the establishment of this holiday, November 3 was also a national holiday called ''Meiji‐setsu'' 明治節 commemorating the birthday of Emperor Meiji, the two holidays are ostensibly unrelated.)

November 23
Labour Thanksgiving Day ‐ 勤労感謝の日Kinrō Kansha no Hi
This national holiday was established in 1948 as an occasion for praising labor, celebrating production and giving one another thanks. Prior to the establishment of this holiday, November 23 was celebrated as an imperial harvest festival called ''Niiname‐sai''新嘗祭 .

December 23
The Emperor's Birthday ‐ 天皇誕生日Tennō Tanjōbi
The birthday of the reigning emperor has been a national holiday since 1868. Originally known as ''Tenchō‐setsu'' 天長節 , it was renamed ''Tennō tanjōbi'' 天皇誕生日 in 1948. It is currently celebrated on December 23; Akihito Emperor Akihito was born on this day in1933. (Prior to the death of Emperor Hirohito in 1989, this holiday was celebrated on April 29. See "Shōwa Day" above.)


 

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