As many as 50,000 people are expected to pack into the Buddhist Church of Sacramento on Saturday and Sunday for the 66th annual Japanese Food & Cultural Bazaar.
The two-day extravaganza of performances, cooking, cultural demonstrations and exhibits is a major attraction, drawing attendees and volunteers from the Bay Area and beyond.
It began in 1947, after members of Sacramento's Japanese American community returned from their government-forced internment during World War II.
In a news release, the Buddhist church said bazaar-goers consume 10,000 pounds of chicken, 1,500 pounds of beef, 400 pounds of shrimp, and 1 1/2 tons of rice. Proceeds from food and craft sales support the church and affiliated organizations, including a Japanese language school.
Admission is free. The church will shuttle attendees from a parking lot at W and Seventh streets to the church at 2401 Riverside Blvd.
Highlights include performances by Sacramento Taiko Dan and Sakura Minyo Doo Koo Kai, a Japanese folk and dance group. Sessions on Buddhist philosophy will be held in the main chapel.
To learn more, visit www.buddhistchurch. com/events/Bazaar.htm Mary Lynne Vellinga