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Food, dance and bonsai at the colorful Obon Festival in Arroyo Grande

There was plenty to see and do at the 2017 Obon Festival, from Taiko drummers, hula dancing and a martial arts demonstration to Bonsai tree-trimming and plenty of booths serving Japanese food.

The San Luis Obispo Buddhist Church held the festival at St. Patrick’s Catholic School in Arroyo Grande.

The Obon Festival’s Odori dancers performed in beautiful kimonos. The tradition of Obon dancing is to celebrate the story of Mogallana, one of the Buddha’s foremost disciples and how Obon is a fixed way of life for Japanese Buddhists.

The festival is one of their most colorful events of the year.

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