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O-Shogatsu, Japanese New Year

Photo by Jonathan Ley

O-Shogatsu literally means “standard month”. By the standard that man sets during this month, during the very first few days, his fortune will be regulated for the rest of the year. Therefore “hoping the best,” people are in their highest spirits. All ill-feeling and disagreeable recollections are left behind with the old year and a new chapter of life opens, replete with happy prospects.

Photo by Jonathan Ley

Here at the Garden, we will be appreciating this special moment twice: January 1st and 5th. On January 1st we open for members and their guests, and will commemorate the holiday with a tranquil and refreshed atmosphere and authentic Japanese New Year’s décor. On January 5th, the garden will celebrate the event in a more festive and merry way, including through the Lion Dance, a New-Year’s style tea ceremony, a Koto harp concert, and sharing Mochitsuki (pounded rice cake) as a finale. An ink-wash brush drawing session and Hyakunin Issyu (poetry game) will be held in the Yanai Classroom.

Let’s celebrate the wonderful beginning of 2020 together!

“Propitious clouds hanging over the heavens, the eastern breeze favoring every habitation, the cuckoo singing and the plum blossoms giving forth their fragrance, the first day of the first month of the year thrills every heart with a feeling ethereal.” – U.A. Casal