Growing up a Navy brat, I had the opportunity to live in Japan for about 6-7 years of my life. During my dad’s second tour to Japan, we lived at Naval Air Facility Atsugi just south of Tokyo where my dad served as the base’s Command Master Chief. I always enjoyed the various activities that were shared among the American and Japanese people. They have an awesome culture with many festivals.
The Awa Odori festival was always one of my favorite, after the Bon Odori. It involves a lot of dancing and singing…and drinking! The festival dates back to the 12th century. It’s just a lot of fun, as you can see in this photo from Seaman Apprentice Vivian Blakely.
Capt. Eric Gardner, middle, commanding officer of Naval Air Facility Atsugi, performs a traditional dance with members of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force during the Awa Odori festival. Participants showcased their dances which will be performed during the Bon Odori festival on August 20.