Hanamatsuri Bazaar
Celebrating the Birth of Buddha

Saturday & Sunday
April 27 & 28, 2013
12 Noon - 6:00 PM
Everyone Welcome * Free Admission * Free Parking

Festival Flyer
click here to see flyer

Entertainment & Demonstrations

(schedule subject
to change)



12:30 - 3:30 - CHOPSTICK PAPER ORIGAMI hands-on activity with Eric Kuniholm = Learn how to fold chopstick paper into a chopstick holder in the shape of a dragon, dog, bird, dinosaur, and other figures.

12:45 - OKINAWAN FOLK SONGS = Okinawan folk songs are performed on the 3-stringed sanshin/jamisen, a banjo-like instrument with a snakeskin-covered body. Performance by the Nishikawa Atsuko Minyo Kenkyusho group.

1:30 - INTRODUCTION TO BUDDHISM = Informative talk about Buddhism and open question-and-answer session with Sensei Ellen Hamada Crane from the Orange County Buddhist Church.

2:30 - JAPANESE FOLK DANCE = Folk dances learned from different prefectures in Japan and passed down from generation to generation, as performed by the Kikuta Kai dance group.

3:30 - KIMONO DEMONSTRATION = Instructor Yuko Niwa will demonstrate how to put on a kimono, obi (sash), obiage and obigime, as well as introduce the "Shichi-go-san" (seven-five-three) children's ceremony where children of ages seven, five, and three are dressed in kimono or haori jackets and hakama pants for their visit to the local shrines. At the end, a few audience members can volunteer to be dressed in a kimono.

4 - 6 - JAPANESE CHESS (SHOGI) hands-on activity = Learn how to play Japanese chess with shogi master Eric Kuniholm.

4:30 - SHAKUHACHI OASIS = The sound of the shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute) will help your mind shift gears from over multitasking to becoming centered as you listen to selections from the modern Tozan School and the older classic Kinko School of shakuhachi centering music (Honkyoku) in the Zen Buddhist tradition, as performed by Mary Lu Brandwein.

5:15 - TAIKO DRUMMING = Lively drumming by the temple's adult and youth groups, Shokenji Taiko & Junior Taiko of Vista Buddhist Temple.

SUNDAY, APRIL 28, 2013

12 - 4 - CANDY SCULPTING (AME ZAIKU) = Ame zaiku, literally "candy craft" in Japanese, is a centuries old art form in which hot taffy-like candy is sculpted into colorful shapes and animals. You can watch candy artist Shan Ichiyanagi at work and purchase his candy sculptures.

12:45 - INTRODUCTION TO BUDDHISM = Informative talk about Buddhism and open question-and-answer session with Rev. Bill Dearth from the Orange County Buddhist Church.

1:45 - KOTO, SHAKUHACHI & SHAMISEN = Enjoy the elegant sounds of the Masazumi Kai ensemble group as they perform on the koto (13-string harp-like instrument), shakuhachi (bamboo flute), and shamisen (3-string banjo-like instrument).

2:30 - JAPANESE CLASSICAL DANCE = Classical dance (Nihon Buyo) is known for its refined movements, emotional expressions, and symbolic gestures, which incorporate techniques transmitted over four centuries of performing arts. Performance by the Mai No Kai dance group.

3:30 - TEA CEREMONY = Demonstration of traditional Japanese tea ceremony by tea master Soko Fosket and her students.

4:30 - SHAOLIN KUNG FU = This martial art, which originated in the Shaolin Buddhist monasteries of China, will be demonstrated by 16-year-old martial arts talent Ali Viettoy from the Hsi Fang Temple in San Diego.

5:00 - TAIKO DRUMMING = Lively drumming by the temple's adult and youth groups, Shokenji Taiko & Junior Taiko of Vista Buddhist Temple.


12 - 6* BOTH DAYS - "THE FACES OF BUDDHA" PHOTO EXHIBIT = The images in this exhibit by photographer Felix Bonomo depict the Buddha from Japan, China, Thailand, Tibet, and the United States -- images which reflect regional variations on how the Buddha is manifested.

* NOTE: This exhibit will be displayed in the temple main hall and will not be accessible during the following presentations which take place in the main hall: 1) Saturday, 1:30-2:30, Introduction to Buddhism; 2) Saturday, 4:30 - 5:15, Shakuhachi Oasis; 3) Sunday, 12:45-1:45, Introduction to Buddhism.

Craft Boutique -- Sumie Painting Displays/Craft Items -- Buddhist Bookstore -- Fresh Produce -- Cut Flowers and Plants -- "Hanamido" Flower Altar

Main Dishes: Beef Teriyaki -- Chicken Teriyaki -- Fried Rice -- Hot Dogs -- Japanese Vegetarian Curry -- Sushi -- Tempura (vegetable) -- Udon & Soba Noodle Soup -- Won Ton -- Yakisoba Noodles (vegetarian)

Sweet Stuff: Manju -- Japanese Donut Holes -- Mochi Ice Cream -- Snow Cones -- Strawberry Shortcake -- Taikoyaki

Goldfish Game and other games for children
Raffle ($2 ticket)
First Prize $1,000 -- Second Prize $500 -- Third Prize $100 in Gift Certificates -- and many additional prizes

Festival parking is free. You can park in the following places:

1. in the temple/cultural center parking lot

2. on the street

3. on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Scripps Coastal Medical Center Parking Structure (1st floor and part of 2nd floor are for patient parking only)

Directions to VBT
Click here for directions to Vista Buddhist Temple.


The Meaning of Hanamatsuri

“Hanamatsuri,” the flower festival, is the celebration of the Buddha’s birth.  It is said that the Buddha was born on April 8, 563 B.C.E. near the southern border of present-day Nepal.  The year 2013, therefore, is the 2,576th commemoration of his birthday.

The Buddha’s given name was Siddhartha.  According to legend, he was born a prince and heir to the throne of King Suddhodana of the Kingdom of Kapilavastu.  Siddhartha’s mother, Queen Maya, is said to have been travelling to her parents’ home to give birth on the last days of her pregnancy as was the custom in those days.  She and her attendants stopped to rest at the beautiful Lumbini Garden.  It was here, as she was enjoying the flowers in the springtime bloom, that the Buddha was born.

The floral altar (“hanamido”) of the Buddha that will be displayed in the temple main hall represents Lumbini Garden.  The custom of pouring sweet tea over the statue of Buddha represents the pure rain that is said to have fallen when he was born.  The special altar, the beautiful decorations and the pouring of sweet tea give “Hanamatsuri” a festive atmosphere and express our respect and reverence toward the Buddha and his teachings.

The celebration of “Hanamatsuri” is not solely the celebration of the birthday of one historic person.  “Hanamatsuri” truly is an expression of our joy in being able to encounter the Dharma today, for it is that encounter that gives us the opportunity to receive the eternal life of the Buddha’s Wisdom and Compassion.