Thai Festival to be hosted in Okinawa for the first time this fall

Thai Festival to be hosted in Okinawa for the first time this fall

The Thai Festival was crowded with people, taken on May 12 at the event square in Yoyogi Park in Tokyo Prefecture.

May 17, 2019 Ryukyu Shimpo

For the first time ever, the Thai Festival hosted by the Embassy of Thailand in Japan is to take place as early as this fall in Okinawa. The festival is being advertised on the Embassy of Thailand’s homepage. The festival is known for being hosted around the world and takes pride in the ability to attract customers. Up until now, the festival has been hosted in Tokyo 20 times and attracted 20 to 30-thousand people in a span of two days, such as a weekend. An Okinawa Prefecture Tourism Promotion Division representative said, “In preparation for hosting (the festival) this fall, we’ve been making adjustments with Thailand since last year. We’re aiming to attract tens of thousands of people.”

On May 11 and 12, the Thai Festival took place at Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park and was bustling with people. The festival offered a variety of booths serving Thai food and miscellaneous goods. Since awamori is brewed using Thai rice, the Okinawa Prefecture Sake Brewers Association offered awamori at one of the booths. There were also performances by artists that are popular in Thailand, such as BNK48, which is a part of the AKB48 group.

An Okinawa Prefecture Sake Brewers Association representative has high hopes and said, “This is the second time we’ve had a booth at (a Thai Festival) held in Tokyo. This time around, about 3-thousand cups worth were sampled in two days, and we were able to get a lot of feedback via surveys. This year, there are plans to host a festival in Okinawa, so we hope to promote awamori there as well.”

During a press conference on May 14, Minister of State for Okinawa Mitsuhiro Miyakoshi said, “We aim to host the first Thai Festival in Okinawa this fall and preparations for it are underway. There are direct flights between Okinawa and Thailand and we hope that through hosting the festival, friendship between the two countries will grow, and that it will also contribute to increased consumption of Ryukyu awamori, which uses Thai rice.”

(English translation by T&CT and Chelsea Ashimine)

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