The Nihonmachi Street Fair turns 45 this year. San Francisco in the ’70s was a vibrant place where everyone began to celebrate their history with pride. The fair began as an event to teach the youth of Japan Town to honour their heritage. Today, it has evolved into a celebration of the Pan-Asian community in San Francisco.
What I like best is that it’s a hands-on event. You can create something yourself or buy handmade items from local artisans. My next door neighbour occasionally teaches Ikibana, Japanese flower arranging, at the fair. Children’s World continues the tradition with fun classes.
Like any good festival, the food is fantastic. You can find booths and food trucks from popular local eateries.
Don’t miss the Annual Fun and Furry Pooch Pageant and Doggy Parade. The cutest dogs in the craziest costumes go on parade with their equally bedazzled owners. Doggy world is on Sunday only. Proceeds will help local animal rescue non-profits.
The Art and Soul of J-Town on Sunday continues this year with street art and spoken word poetry.
The entertainment is Pan-Asian. On the Cultural Stage there is Hawaiian hula, Japanese dancers performing Odori, Traditional Indian dance and even hip-hop DJs from Asia. Some traditions are new. It’s dazzling.
It’s the first weekend in August along Post Street between Laguna and Fillmore Streets in the heart of Japan Town. Bring your appetite, your camera and have a great time. Be creative!