The 35th Annual Black Ships Festival

Published by MM Editor on Wednesday, 11th July 2018 - 11:46AM

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Join the Japan America Society of Rhode Island for the 35th Annual Black Ships Festival July 13-15. 

A celebration of the friendship and culture between Japan and the United States and the trading treaty negotiated by Newport’s Own Commodore Matthew C. Perry, USN over 150 years ago. From Arts & Crafts, Taiko Drumming and Martial Arts to the Sushi & Sake Sail and the Black Ships Gala there are a variety of events and activities for all ages and interest. All are invited to opening ceremonies at Independence Park in Bristol,Friday July 13th. Saturday Independence Park becomes a Japanese American Village with arts crafts and martial arts. "It is almost like taking a trip to Japan without leaving Newport." Saturday night is the elegant gala at the Waterside tent at the Herreshoff Museum. 

Festival Opening Ceremonies

Friday, July 13th, 2018

10:30am • Independence Park, Bristol (Thames Street)

​Colorful ceremonies to commemorate Newport’s native son, Commodore Matthew C. Perry, and the signing of the Treaty of Kanagawa, which opened trade between Japan and the United States. Wreath-laying and speeches by American and Japanese dignitaries. Colors will be presented by the Navy Color Guard and accompanied music by the Navy Band.

Sushi Sake Sail I

Friday, July 13th, 2018

3:00pm – 5:00pm • Goat Island Marina

Sail aboard one of the magnificent Tall Ships, the 101′ Schooner Aurora. View Newport harbor as you sip sake from Gekkeikan, and sample some great sushi. Space is limited to 68 people. A sellout every year! Sponsored by IDC, The Newport Experience. $30 per person in advance and $35 day of the event (if available). For tickets call 401-846-2720, or Online * Please arrive 15 mins prior to the sail to get checked in. Be sure to allow for traffic, boat leaves promptly

Taiko Drum Performances & Japanese Hip-Hop Dance Team

Friday, July 13th, 2018

7:00pm-8:30pm- Herreshoff Museum Waterside Tent

Gendo Taiko and Shin Daiko, will dazzle you with their electrifying drums. 12DC Dance Team, visiting us from Shimoda, Japan will excite you with their trendy dance moves. Tickets only $10! Call 401-846-2720 or buy Online

Arts & Crafts and

Martial Arts Fair

Saturday, July 14th, 2018

10:00am-4:00pm- Independence Park, Bristol

Independence Park on Thames Street is transformed into a Japanese-American Cultural Center, featuring demonstrations, workshops, and displays. Including Arts and Crafts and Martial Arts Demonstrations. Full Schedule of Park Events

Black Ships Festival Gala

Saturday, July 14th, 2018

6:30pm-10:30pm- Elegant Herreshoff Waterside Tent

Celebrate the 35th Anniversary of the Black Ships Festival. Enjoy a formal gala honoring the signing of the Treaty of Kanagawa and the accomplishments of the United States Navy. Join us as we welcome Japanese Dignitaries, RI Officials and the US Navy. Enjoy a unique evening that fuses both Japanese and American culture. The Gala includes dancing, an Open Bar, wines by Oyster Bay Wines, Vodka Martini Bar with Broken Shed Vodka and cultural cuisine with a Japanese flare. Begin the evening with the breaking of the Ceremonial Sake Drum filled with Gekkeikan Sake. Enjoy a exclusive taiko drumming presentation by Brown University Taiko Drummers. Outstanding sit down dinner prepared by Pranzi Catering, Sushi station by Haruki, and hand crafted cocktails by The Cocktail Guru. Gala is Presented by Toray Plastics (America), Inc. – Buy Tickets Online

Sushi Sake Sail II

Sunday, July 15th, 2018

11:00am – 1:00pm • Goat Island Marina

Sail aboard one of the magnificent Tall Ships, the 101′ Schooner Aurora. View Newport harbor as you sip sake from Gekkeikan, and sample some great sushi. Space is limited to 68 people. A sellout every year! Sponsored by IDC, The Newport Experience. $35 per person in advance and $40 day of the event (if available). For tickets call 401-846-2720, or Online * Please arrive 15 mins prior to the sail to get checked in. Be sure to allow for traffic, boat leaves promptly


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