We were able to organize this trip thanks to the fundraiser event with auction on 3/11 earlier this year.
The journey started with a smaller group of volunteers and about the same amount of nadia core members on Friday night from Shinjuku.
The bus drove through the night and we arrived safely early morning in Ishinomaki. We could get another few hours of sleep, laying down in the Minato community center.
Saturday morning we split into several groups:
Gentaro and Joji visited Chiba-san to plan about the Ogatsu playground build in September
Sakiko and volunteer friends went shopping for ingredients and then prepared crepes in the Minato community center kitchen for the Sunday festival
Koss and a fellow volunteer drove to Kamome school for disabled kids where we built a playground at the end of 2014; they did some maintenance and weeding around the play-set
Morgan and Rolf took some volunteers to the annual grass and weed cutting around the Atsuta shrine. Fortunately we got reinforced by locals helpers
It was raining quite hard the whole Saturday but on Sunday it luckily cleared up, right on time for the Sanja kids festival.
The preparations and ceremony started early Sunday morning.
By the time the kids and adults in their blue happis (shirts), carrying the mikoshi (portable shrine), shouting ‘yoisa yoisa’, came back from their rounds around the neighborhood the following entertainment was ready:
giant “magic” bubbles (not so gigantic in the picture)
the shovel guitar players proved again that it doesn’t need strings to play the shovels
the Ogatsu taiko drummers took it away with their outstanding powerful performance
the Okinawa performers sang and played traditional songs with their shamisen guitars
fishing water balloons and toys which turned into a big splash zone in the end – how fun was that!
various foods like yakisoba and others from the local community as well as crepes from team nadia
THANK YOU, supporters of the 3/11 memorial dinner and volunteers to make a difference by supporting this great festival event. We participated the 5th time this year and its always great fun as you can see on the pictures above.