Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple Bon Odori Festival (1999)

Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple Bon Odori Festival, 1999

“It was a way for the Gojikai members (of the Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple) to have fun and carry on their culture after their nightly Friday meetings at the church. Practices would often continue into the weekend on the church’s gym stage. They’d run back and forth behind the stage changing into various costumes. It was a family affair between many of the Tomita’s, Hagimori’s, Harada’s, Shimizu’s just to name a few. There were also many after-hour social gatherings that took place at my bachan’s (grandma’s) hotel in Chinatown, the New American Hotel, or at various Japanese and Chinese restaurants. This was an extension of church for all the families as they were very close knit in those days with many living a short distance from church in outlying neighborhoods, Beacon Hill, South Seattle and Chinatown.”

Mark Yuasa, grandson of Kiki Hagimori and son of Sharon Yuasa, shibai performers.

Kiki Hagimori (shibai performer) and her family, including her daughter, Sharon who performed shibai as a child. Front row, left to right – Ryan Nakata, Taylan Yuasa; back row, left to right – Stacy (Yuasa) Nakata, Kiki Hagimori, Jeanne Chang, Sharon (Hagimori) Yuasa, Mark Yuasa. 

          Courtesy of Seattle Betsuin Archives Committee

Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple Bon Odori Festival (1999)