The Sou’wester

Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

Memphis+Botanic+Gardens+celebrates+Japan+Fest.
Back to Article
Back to Article

Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

Memphis Botanic Gardens celebrates Japan Fest.

Memphis Botanic Gardens celebrates Japan Fest.

Memphis Botanic Gardens celebrates Japan Fest.

Memphis Botanic Gardens celebrates Japan Fest.

Hannah Miller '22, Staff Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






On Sept. 30,  crowds of people gathered to celebrate the second annual Memphis Japan Festival, hosted by the Memphis Botanic Garden. The Festival encourages families in the Memphis community to celebrate the unique history and culture of Japan. The week prior to the Festival, the Botanic Garden hosted a “Japan Week” with events such as “Origami in the Garden” and a movie night for families. In addition, there was a showing of “Persona Non Grata” held at Malco Paradiso. The film details the life of Japanese diplomat Chiune Sugihara, who saved thousand of Jewish refugees during World War II.

During the Festival,  there were activities for children and adults alike, and a variety of food vendors, including Memphis Mojo Cafe, New Wing Order, Mempops, and Wild Bill’s Olde Fashioned Soda were in attendance. The University of Memphis Language Department coupled with the Botanic Garden together provided a children’s area with stations for children to practice calligraphy and have their faces painted. Children were taught the traditional Japanese game “goldfish scooping,” where goldfish are carefully captured with a paper container until it breaks. A Purikura photo booth was available to give participants souvenir photos. Later, a martial arts demonstration took place on the central lawn of the Botanic Garden, and “Culture Camp” held short segments of discussion and hands-on learning like Japanese Garden tours, a Bonsai Tree Basics talk, and kimono history. Participants of all ages were encouraged to bring their own kimonos, or could purchase one at the festival, and volunteers showed them how to properly dress in them.

Another one of the Festival’s main attractions centered around a sumo wrestling match open to all attendees. For $5, volunteers could be inflated into a large suit and set to wrestle against a partner. Many onlookers stopped to watch and laugh: a Japanese tradition in sumo wrestling is that whenever the challenger knocks over his opponent, he should jump on him to show that he is the true winner.

Another popular event was Pokemon Go in the Garden. Throughout the Festival, families were encouraged to support one of Japan’s most beloved and well-known characters, Pokemon, by checking in to one of the over forty Pokestops all over the Garden grounds. The event culminated with a special visit from the  Memphis Grizzlies forward, Yuta Watanabe, who came to express his proud Japanese heritage and engage with the local Memphis Japanese community.

About the Writer
Hannah Miller '22, Staff Writer

Hannah Miller is a staff writer with The Sou'wester. She is a first-year business and French double major. She has been a member of the newspaper staff...

Leave a Comment

Constructive discourse is the bedrock of a successful democracy. For this reason, comments will be moderated to ensure substantive dialogue for the Rhodes community. Personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence and comments in ALL-CAPS will not be tolerated. Rhodes students: take care to ensure your comments abide by the honor code and commitment to diversity. Comments violating college policy will be turned over to the appropriate student judiciary or administrative organ.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    Beyond the Gates

    Sophomore Mary Thomas speaks at Memphis Women’s March

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    Beyond the Gates

    Halloween in the 901

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    Beyond the Gates

    Mempho returns bigger, better

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    Beyond the Gates

    Rhodes alumnus to be published at year’s end

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    Beyond the Gates

    The Grey Canary

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    Beyond the Gates

    Memphis remembers 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    News

    Spotlight: Res Life student staff describe office in turmoil, fear Aretha Milligan

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    News

    From the editor: The Sou’wester is not being censored

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    News

    Board of Trustees renames Palmer Hall to Southwestern Hall

  • Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens

    News

    2019 Editors’ Choice Awards

Navigate Right
The Student News Site of Rhodes College
Japan Fest at the Memphis Botanic Gardens