Thursday, June 9, 2011

Hawaii’s Duke and Father of Surfing Remembered with 10th Oceanfest

Celebrate the birthday of Hawaii’s “Father of Surfing,” Duke Paoa Kahanamoku, in true Waikiki Beachboy style with the 10th Annual Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Foundation’s Oceanfest, August 24 – 28, 2011! Participate in or simply enjoy watching a host of ocean sports including longboard surfing, surf polo, swimming, stand up paddling and paddleboarding all along Waikiki Beach. The Oceanfest culminates with a lei draping ceremony of over 500 feet of lei on Duke’s statue.

Proceeds from the week of events provide scholarships for Hawaii’s scholar-athletes and charitable organizations throughout Hawaii. Duke Kahanamoku had a long and distinguished list of athletic achievements, including Olympic gold medals and world swimming records that stand tall and proud in the annals of sports history. Moreover, the Duke may be more well known as Hawaii’s ambassador of aloha and father of international surfing.

The events are free to attend, with food booths and entertainment.

For more information, please visit: www.DukeFoundation.org

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Summer Eisa in Okinawa Japan

jts-logo.jpg “Eisa” is an Okinawan ceremonial dance using drums, originally performed to welcome and console the souls of one’s ancestors during the Summer “Bon” season. The steady beat of various drums, colorful and exotic costumes, sweetness of the women’s dance, and dynamic moves by young men, are all the essence of exciting Eisa.

Some videos of Eisa performances can be seen at http://editor.wn.com … arade_Okinawa_Japan/ or on the Naka’s Travel Service YouTube Channel.

Naka’s Travel Service escorts tours to Okinawa from Honolulu every year, see the Okinawa tours page for information on current and future escorted tours.

August 7, 2011: 10,000 Eisar Dance Festa 2011

Dynamic and colorful Eisar dance is what Okinawa’s summer is all about. Out of many Eisar festivals, this is one of the must-see! In this event, the popular Naha shopping street goes completely Eisar for a whole week, concluding with the final parade by 10,000 Eisar dancers. Enjoy watching various Eisar styles, both traditional and new, from youth to elderly dance on-stage and throughout the street.

For more information see http://www.kokusaidori.org/

August 18-21, 2011: The 56th All-Okinawa Eisa Festival

Okinawa City, the home of many famous Eisa teams, has hosted the festival since 1956. There is no such opportunity as this festival where you can see Eisa teams from all over the island together on one field.

For more information see http://www.koza.ne.jp/

Friday, May 27, 2011

2011 Worldwide Uchinanchu Taikai Caravan Group

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2011 Worldwide Uchinanchu Taikai Caravan

Governor Hirokazu Nakaima Comes To Hawaii !

Date: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 , 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Place: Hawaii Okinawa Center, Legacy Ballroom

The 5th Worldwide Uchinanchu Taikai Overseas Caravan group will be visiting Kenjinkais in Canada, New York, Los Angeles and their last stop: Honolulu!

If you are interested in participating in the 5th Worldwide Uchinanchu Taikai in October, please join us on Wednesday, June 8th at 7 p.m. The Caravan group will be ready to share information about the Taikai and will also show the DVD of the last Taikai that took place five years ago. It is their hope that their visit and sharing will create excitement and enthusiastic participation in the Taikai. With the talented and famous Daiichi Hirata in the midst of the Taikai Caravan group, we can expect an exciting “finale”! So, see y’all on June 8th !

Please contact us if you will be attending and if you will be traveling to the Taikai with the Naka’s Travel Service 5th Worldwide Uchinanchu Festival Tour to Okinawa. If you are not connected with a tour group and are traveling independently, please call the Hawaii United Okinawa Association at 676-5400 or email huoa@huoa.org to let them know of your attendance.

Roster of Taikai Caravan Group:

  • Governor Hirokazu Nakaima, Okinawa Prefecture
  • Kiichiro Miyagi, Governor’s Secretary
  • Hidetoshi Chinen, Governor’s Interpreter
  • Daiichi Hirata, Director General, Dept. of Culture, Tourism & Sports
  • Tae Tengan, Deputy Taikai Chair
  • Yasuhiko Yogi, Chief of Taikai Participant Coordination Section
  • Matthew Anderson, Coordinator for International Relations

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Hiroshima Navigator

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The city of Hiroshima, in western Japan, has redesigned the Hiroshima online sightseeing site “Hiroshima Navigator” (www.hiroshima-navi.or.jp/en). It features information about sightseeing spots, information about accommodation, shopping, restaurants and more.

With six beautiful rivers flowing through it, Hiroshima is called the City of Water. The origins of the City date back to 1589 when Mori Terumoto, a feudal lord, built Hiroshima Castle (also referred to as Rijo, or Carp Castle) at the large delta of the Ota-gawa River. (The current castle was reconstructed after the original was destroyed by an atomic bomb during the war.)

Because the delta resembled a large island, the area was called “Hiroshima,” or ‘wide island’ in Japanese. The town was the seat of the Mori and Fukushima families, and later of the Asano, who laid the foundations of Hiroshima’s further development as the most lively castle town in western Japan.

Upcoming events in Hiroshima:

Hiroshima established the Hiroshima Art Prize in 1989. The purpose is to recognize the achievements of artists who have contributed to the peace of humanity in the field of contemporary art, and through contemporary art aim to appeal to a wider world and the spread the “Spirit of Hiroshima,” which seeks everlasting world peace. This prize is awarded once every three years. The winner of the eighth Hiroshima Art Prize is Yoko Ono. An award ceremony will be held in July. At the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, a special exhibition about Ono will start from July.

The Peace Memorial Ceremony is held on Aug. 6 every year. The ceremony starts at 8 a.m. Many visitors come to the peace memorial park to attend the ceremony in early morning. At night, a Lantern Floating ceremony will be held. Originally, lantern floating is an event to mourn for the departed souls. But in this Lantern Floating ceremony, participants float their lantern not only to mourn for the souls of the victims by A-bombing, but also to promise to make efforts toward the realization of world peace.

In late October, the Hiroshima Food Festival will be held in Hiroshima Castle and the Central Park featuring various foods from all over Hiroshima prefecture. Many stalls are opened at the site. From the end of October to the end of November, the fall foliage is at its finest in Hiroshima. Miyajima is famous for foliage sighting as is Hijiyama park and the Mitakidera temples and in the northern part of Hiroshima scenic areas such as Sandankyo Gorge and Taishakukyo Gorge.

See the Naka’s Travel Service Japan Tours page for information on package tours to Hiroshima and other parts of Japan. There is more information about Hiroshima on the Hiroshima Navigator page at http://www.hiroshima-navi.or.jp/en/ or from the Japan National Tourism Organization page at http://www.japantravelinfo.com.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Travel Guard Launches World Unluckiest Traveler 2 Contest

travel-insurance-number1.gif Travel Guard North America is launching “World’s Unluckiest Traveler 2: The Rescue” contest on Memorial Day.

The public can share how one kind person saved their day while traveling. In the business of helping correct travel mishaps, Travel Guard knows first-hand how one good deed can turn a travel nightmare into a dream come true. So whether someone came to the rescue in an emergency, a flight attendant personally carried a passenger’s bag, or a traveler gave up their airline seat to a fellow passenger, Travel Guard wants to hear about these random acts of kindness.

The story that wins as voted by the public will be awarded a $10,000 “Hero’s Vacation.” Travel Guard is also encouraging the public to spread the love by sharing their favorite stories of travel good deeds via Facebook, Twitter and other social networks. For more information on the contest starting May 30th 2011 and a full set of rules and regulations, visit http://www.TravelGuard.com. See the Naka’s Travel Service travel insurance page for online quotes for information about ensuring your peace of mind with TravelGuard.