Some great Eisa festivals to check out!
10,000 PEOPLE’S EISA PARADE: Aug. 2, 1 p.m.; A total of 10,000 Eisa dancers and taiko drummers will gather and parade along Kokusai Dori Street, Naha City. Anyone can participate with advance practice sessions; 098-863-2755.
YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL IN CHATAN: Aug. 2, 5:30-10 p.m., Eisa groups from Chatan Town and its neighbors gather and parade to display the traditional Okinawan dance; Kuwae Sogo Baseball Field; 098-982-5678.
GINOWAN HAGOROMO FESTIVAL: Aug. 8-9, 3-9 p.m.; Traditional parade through Kankaimon, Convention and Naka streets. Free event will include youth Eisa performances, 1,800 firework display from 9-9:20 p.m. and more at Ocean Park Multi-purpose Square; 098-897-2764.
KINCHO YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 9, 5-9 p.m.; Youth Eisa groups from each district in Kincho get together and participate in this festival. Fireworks display at 8:30 p.m.; Kin-District Park; Five-minute drive from Kin IC on Okinawa Express; 098-968-8996.
OGIMI VILLAGE EISA FESTIVAL: Aug 8-9, 1-9 p.m.; Eisa dance along with live performances and attractions scheduled. Fireworks display at 8 p.m. on Sunday; Shioya Fishery Port; 30-minute drive from Nago city; 098-44-3007.
OKINAWA CHILDREN’S KINGDOM EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 8-9, 4-9 p.m.; Eisa is a traditional Okinawan dance with taiko drums during Obon, a Buddhist holiday to honor the spirits of ancestors. Eisa dancers and taiko drummers from 30 communities will gather at Okinawa Children’s Kingdom, children’s Eisa groups perform at 4 p.m., youth Eisa groups at 6:30 p.m.; 500 yen adults, 200 yen junior and senior high school students, 100 yen children; 098-933-4190.
ITOMAN FURUSATO (HOMETOWN) FESTIVAL: Aug. 15-16, 1-9:30 p.m.; local products and crafts on sale, traditional Okinawa dances and taiko drums. Fireworks display at 9 p.m. on Saturday, at 8:55 p.m. on Sunday; Itoman Fishing Port North District; free; 098-840-8135.
YAMBARU YOUTH EISA MATSURI: Aug. 23, 5 p.m., Youth Eisa groups from Motobu town will gather and perform at Motobu-cho Tancha Koen; 0980-47-5211.
IESON (VILLAGE) YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 26-27, 7:30 p.m.; Eisa parade throughout the streets of Ieson (village) with different forms of Taiko (Japanese drum) on each district of this region; free; 30-minute ferry ride from Motobu Port; 0980-49-2334.
ITOMAN EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 26-28, 2-10 p.m.; Eisa parade from Ganjukan to Nishikawa Community Center on Aug. 26, from 1-chome to Hamakawa Danchi (apartment complex) on Aug. 27, from Shiohira Elementary School to Ganjyukan on Aug. 28; free; 0980-987-0834.
HESHIKIYA EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 28-29, 6 p.m.; Youth Eisa groups with traditional forms of Taiko (drums) and perform Eisa dance at Uragahama Park, fireworks display at a finale; Uruma city; 098-979-2231.
YOMITAN VILLAGE TAKASHIHO STREETS EISA PARADISE: Aug. 29, 3-6 p.m.; Youth Eisa groups parade along with standard-bearers, street dancers’ performance and more; on the route 6; Takashiho Streets of Yomitan village; 098-958-6494.
KADENA EISA MATSURI: Aug. 29, 7 p.m. Eisa groups from Kadena town will gather and parade at Shinmachi Streets; free; 098-956-2810.
60TH ALL OKINAWA EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 4, 6-9 p.m. at the Goya crossroads; Sept. 5, 3-9 p.m., Sept. 6, 2:30-9 p.m. at Okinawa City Koza Athletic Park; selected Eiga groups throughout in Okinawa get together and perform Eisa, Sanshin and taiko at Koza Athletic Park Athletic Field. Fireworks display each night at 8:45 p.m.; 1,000-1,500-2,500 yen; 098-989-5566.
URUMA EISA MATSURI: Sept. 11, 6:30-9 p.m., Sept. 12-13, 4-9 p.m.; Youth Eisa groups will gather and parade along the street of Uruma City Hall Gushikawa Office Building on Sept. 11, and at Yonashiro Sogo Koen Athletic Field on Sept. 12-13. Fireworks display at 8:40 p.m. on weekend; 098-965-5634.
26TH NAGO YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 12, 3:30 p.m. Eisa youth groups from Nago city and neighboring cities gather and parade at the 21st Century Forest Park outdoor stage, Nago city; free; 0980-53-5429. 2015
GINOWAN YOUTH EISA FESATIVAL: Sept. 12-13, 5-9 p.m.; 10 youth groups from Ginowan city gather and perform traditional Eisa at Ginowan Citizen Square (Shimin Hiroba), also fireworks display at 8:50-9 p.m. on Sun.; 20-minute ride from Kitanakagusuku IC or Nishihawa IC on Okinawa Express; 098-893-4431.
KITANAKAGUSUKU VILLAGE EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 13, 3-9 p.m.; Groups from Kitanakagusuku village gather and perform traditional Eisa. Fireworks display at 9 p.m. at Kitanakagusuka Joseki (castle ruin); 098-935-2233.
YOMITAN VILLAGE YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 13, 2 p.m.; Youth groups scheduled to participate, along with taiko (Japanese drums), and fireworks display; Yomitan Village Heiwa-no Mori Stadium, 30-minute ride from Okinawa North IC on Okinawa Express; 098-982-9200.
NANJO YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 20, noon-9 p.m.; Youth groups from Nanjo city gather and perform traditional Eisa along with taiko (Japanese drums) and local entertainments at Gusuku Road Koen; free; 090-5470-0123.
WORLDWIDE EISA CONTEST 2015: Sept. 21-23; The worldwide Eisa contest will be broken down into three divisions of children (ages 8 years and younger), juniors (ages 15 years and younger) and open from around the world at National Theatre Okinawa; 1,500 yen qualifiers, 2,000 yen final; 098-987-0926.
YAESE YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Oct. 11, noon-9 p.m.; Yaese Town’s five youth groups perform at Yaese Kochinda Undo Koen Athletic Field, 30-minute ride from Naha Airport; free parking available; 098-998-4334.