American Go E-Journal

SDGC teaches Go at the Toro Nagashi Festival

Saturday August 14, 2021

The San Diego Go Club participated in the Japanese Friendship Garden’s celebration of its ancestors at the annual Toro Nagashi Festival in honor of the tradition of Bon Odori. Toro Nagashi (floating lanterns) is a ceremony in honor of those who have passed. The floating lanterns commemorate loved ones and wish them peace.

SDGC took over the exhibition hall during the festival to teach Go, recruit new members, and demonstrate how the game is played. Over 65 copies of “The Way to Go” (provided by the American Go Foundation) were handed out to those festival participants who asked for a Go lesson. All were required to wear masks in the indoor spaces. The eight-hour event, attended by thousands of people on a perfect 73-degree San Diego day, also included food vendors, dancers, singers, sales of Japanese products, and ended with the traditional floating of lanterns down the creek running through the garden.

For over ten years, the SDGC has been giving weekly Go lessons at the Japanese Friendship Garden (JFG), located in Balboa Park. Based on it volunteer work, the SDGC is invited to participate in the JFG’s special celebrations.

-report and photos provided by Ted Terpstra, President of the San Diego Go Club