Tag Archives: Japanese Culture

Labor Thanksgiving Day

Labor Thanksgiving Day (勤労感謝の日, Kinrō Kansha no Hi) is a national holiday in Japan celebrated on November 23 of each year. The law establishing the holiday cites it as an occasion to commemorate labor and production and give one other thanks. Events are held throughout Japan, one such being the Nagano Labor Festival. The event encourages thinking about the environment, peace and human rights. Early-grade elementary students often create drawings for the holiday and

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Shichi-Go-San (Seven-Five-Three Day)

Shichi-Go-San (七五三, lit. “Seven-Five-Three”) is a traditional rite of passage and festival day in Japan for three- and seven-year-old girls and five-year-old (and less commonly three-year-old) boys, held annually on November 15 to celebrate the growth and well-being of young children. As it is not a national holiday, it is generally observed on the nearest weekend. History Shichi-Go-San is said to have originated in the Heian period amongst court

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Culture Day in Japan

Culture Day (文化の日, Bunka no Hi) is a national holiday held annually in Japan on November 3 for the purpose of promoting culture, the arts, and academic endeavor. Festivities typically include art exhibitions, parades, and award ceremonies for distinguished artists and scholars. History Culture Day was first held in 1948, to commemorate the announcement of the post-war Japanese constitution on November 3, 1946. November 3 was first celebrated as a national holiday in 1868, when it

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Autumnal Equinox Day

Autumnal Equinox Day (秋分の日, Shūbun no Hi) is a public holiday in Japan that usually occurs on September 22 or 23, the date of Southward equinox in Japan Standard Time (autumnal equinox can occur on different dates for different time zones). Due to the necessity of recent astronomical measurements, the date of the holiday is not officially declared until February of the previous year. Autumnal Equinox Day became a

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Respect for the Aged Day in Japan

Respect for the Aged Day (敬老の日, Keirō no Hi) is a Japanese designated public holiday celebrated annually to honor elderly citizens. It started in 1966 as a national holiday and was held on every September 15. Since 2003, Respect for the Aged Day is held on the third Monday of September due to the Happy Monday System. This national holiday traces its origins to 1947, when Nomadani-mura (later Yachiyo-cho, currently Taka-cho), Hyōgo Prefecture, proclaimed

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Mountain Day in Japan

In May 2014, it was announced that Mountain Day will be celebrated as a public holiday every August 11, beginning in 2016. Supporters of the holiday included legislator Seishiro Eto and the Japanese Alpine Club. They honor the mountains every August. The legislation states that the holiday is to provide “opportunities to get familiar with mountains and appreciate blessings from mountains. Why

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Hiroshima Memorial Day

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony is an annual Japanese vigil. Every August 6, “A-Bomb Day”, the city of Hiroshima holds the Peace Memorial Ceremony to console the victims of the atomic bombs and to pray for the realization of lasting world peace. The ceremony is held in front of the Memorial Cenotaph in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. Participants include the families of the deceased and people

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Sea Day (Umi No Hi)

Marine Day (海の日, Umi no Hi), also known as “Ocean Day” or “Sea Day”, is a Japanese national holiday usually celebrated on the third Monday in July. In 2020, the holiday will be observed on Thursday, July 23. The purpose of the holiday is to give thanks to the ocean’s bounty and to consider the importance of the ocean to Japan as an island nation.

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Star Festival (Tanabata)

Tanabata (Japanese: たなばた or 七夕, meaning “Evening of the seventh”), also known as the Star Festival (星祭り Hoshi matsuri), is a Japanese festival originating from the Chinese Qixi Festival. It celebrates the meeting of the deities Orihime and Hikoboshi (represented by the stars Vega and Altair respectively). According to legend, the Milky Way separates these lovers, and they are allowed to meet only once a year on the seventh day of the seventh lunar

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Torigoe Matsuri

The Torigoe Matsuri is an annual festival in Tokyo known for being loud, lively, and intense. The main event that most people look forward to is when the largest omikoshi, portable shrine, is carried and paraded through the street. Occasionally fights to break out over who gets to carry the omikoshi due to it being considered good luck to carry it.

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