In Buddhist tradition, Obon is an annual event meant to commemorate one’s ancestors. It is believed that during this festival, the ancestors’ spirits return to this world in order to visit their relatives. Traditionally, lanterns are hung during Obon in order to guide the spirits. This year, all of Spokane — regardless of religious affiliation — are welcomed to the Spokane Buddhist Temple to celebrate the festival with food, art, dancing and music. Participants are encouraged to try Japanese food such as senbei crackers and mochi while browsing Japanese art exhibits. There’s also a Buddhist service at 4 pm, followed by a performance featuring the local Japanese Taiko drummers. The night is rounded out with traditional Bon Odori dancing.
Sun, Aug. 18 from 3-7 pm • Free • All ages • Spokane Buddhist Temple • 927 S. Perry • spokanebuddhisttemple.org • 534-7954
— Morgan Scheerer