A Virtual Obon

Although things are getting  better thanks to the vaccines, we have decided to do San Jose Obon@Home: もう一度! (“moichido” : one more time).

Join us Sunday, July 11th, as we again bring to your home the fun, the food, and the games of Obon! Watch live cooking demonstrations, participate in children’s crafts, and watch performances from San Jose Taiko, Chidori Band, and many more.

Stay tuned for more details and information to be shared here and/or follow us on Facebook & Instagram

Schedule of Events

Time Event
12:00 pm Welcome!
12:10 pm “Irasshai” Procession – SJ Taiko
12:30 pm Meaning of Obon
1:00 pm “Faces of San Jose Obon” – Tribute to Our Volunteers
1:30 pm Collegiate Taiko
2:00 pm “Obon thru the Ages” – Jim McClure, Ken Kamei, Dennis Akizuki
2:30 pm Flavors of Obon: Beef Teriyaki
Time Event
3:00 pm Collegiate Taiko
3:30 pm Buddhism 101 – What is Buddhism? Q&A
4:30 pm Nikkei for Black Lives
5:00 pm “Natsukashii!” Obon Foods of the Past
5:15 pm San Jose Taiko
6:00 pm “How to put on your Yukata” – Moschel Kadokura
6:30 pm Chidori Band
7:00 pm Odori (Dancing)
8:30 pm Sign Off

2020 Obon Merchandise!

“In Memory Of” Giving

For everyone who has enjoyed the San Jose Obon Festival…
Obon is a time to remember, reflect and honor those who have paved the roads we travel today. Especially during these challenging times, we must acknowledge that much of our own courage, strength and compassion are rooted within our families and loved ones. During Obon, we remember our ancestors and express our gratitude for their sacrifices and lessons.
Though reluctant to mention, the Betsuin is working to replace the funds raised during the Obon Festival. Every year we enjoy the food, performances, activities and Bon dancing – many of you give countless hours of your time towards its success. This year we ask that you instead consider a donation to support the services of the Betsuin. A place that is at the center of so many of our community functions. You may choose to donate In Memory Of (remembering a loved one), In Honor Of (recognizing a special person/group) or with any sentiment you choose.
In the spirit of Obon and with gratitude, we hope you find this way of giving both meaningful and valuable. Please join together in commemorating Obon.
For more information or questions, please call the Betsuin Office at (408) 813-6939

Craft Zone!

Obon is more than dancing and eating. There are many traditional decorations and items that are associated with it. And many of them can be made as craft projects by kids of all ages. Here are some craft activities for Obon that come from the teachers at Lotus Preschool and the San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin Dharma School (Sunday school) teachers.

Check out a couple crafts we have put together to create at home!

OBON@HOME Cookbook

If you are like us, you appreciate the opportunity to have someone who is a great chef cook for you rather than spend the years and hours of work it took for the great chef to become the great chef.


There are foods that we enjoy every year at, say San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin’s Obon Festival that you look forward to no matter who is behind the tongs, spatulas, fryers, pots, rollers and grills.

These are community foods. They are foods this special community grew up with. There are always wonderful stories; reminiscences and jokes that come along with community food.

We hope you enjoy our stories and recipes. Some, you’ll see again at future Obon festivals and some you may not. They will stay in the past and new community foods and crews of cooks will begin new festival booths, sharing food of the day.

Whatever happens, just know that all the food at OBON is prepared by hundreds of volunteers over hundreds of hours and decades of recipe sharing.

You’ll see some of the actual poundage of ingredients, bags, pallets, pounds, gallons used and a story or historical context and then – an adjusted recipe that you can try at home!

We hope you enjoy the experience!

Obon @ Home
Cookbook Volunteer Crew
San Jose Buddhist Church

How to put on your Yukata

Check out the step by step process for putting on a Yukata!

Additional information are at: Kailey Wong & Miya Uenaka’s Obon Website

Obon Internet Hunt

Do you like Treasure Hunts? Are you interested in learning and “visiting” places related to Obon. Then our Obon Internet Hunt is for you!
Using your internet access, this activity will guide kids (and those “kids at heart”) to learn interesting facts about Obon and then send you to places related to Obon around the world using Google Earth. If you finish, you’ll get access to a “kawaii”(cute) finisher’s certificate!
This activity is designed for middle school and high school students. It will require a printer (to print out some of the puzzle sheets) and a pencil as well as a decent internet access (to use Google Earth). It has been play tested on a smartphone but it’s best on a laptop.

2020 Obon Videos

2018 & 2019 Obon Videos

2018 Obon Photos | Joe Na, Joenagraphy