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Sunday, Feb. 26, 2006

KANSAI: Who & What

English-language outings on offer:
The YWCA Senri Center is organizing English-speaking excursions on March 5 and March 12.

The fist outing will be to a sake brewery in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto, one of Japan's most famous sake brewing districts. Participants will go to Gekkeikan Okura Kinenkan museum to learn about the brewing process, and have an opportunity to taste some sake and have an optional lunch at a nearby restaurant.

Cost is 1,000 yen excluding transportation and lunch. Participants will meet at 10 a.m. at Big Man, the huge TV screen near the Kinokuniya book store outside Hankyu Umeda Station. The deadline for reservations is Sunday.

The second tour will take in the Sagicho Festival in Omihachiman, Shiga Prefecture. It is held in and around Himure Hachimangu Shrine and involves about a dozen floats, called "sagicho," carried around by local people. The floats are decorated with farm products, dried marine products and other ornaments, and are carried through the streets of the city's old merchants quarter.

In the afternoon, the floats will start to assemble at the shrine and on their way there, the bearers will run and make the floats crash against each other. The decorative floats will be burned at night.

Cost is 1,000 yen excluding transportation and lunch. Participants will meet at noon at the ticket gate in JR Omihachiman Station. Reservations must be made by March 5.

For more information, send an e-mail to the coordinator at usagi9999@yahoo.co.jp

Japanese doc to discuss Doctors Without Borders:
Osaka International House Foundation is hosting a lecture meeting with Dr. Tomoko Kanto, who was sent to areas embroiled in disputes by Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders).

The meeting will run 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. March 12 at International House, Osaka, in Tennoji Ward.

Kanto joined the international humanitarian group in 1993 and was sent to Sri Lanka and Bosnia-Herzegovina as MSF's first Japanese doctor.

She will speak on such topics as the current status of humanitarian activities in disputed areas and the challenges they face.

The lecture will be in Japanese.

Participation is free.

Those wishing to attend should send an application stating their name, address, phone number, how many people will be with them, together with the date of the event to "3rd Chikyu Shimin Talk Plaza Kakari" Osaka International House Foundation at 8-2-6 Uehon-machi, Tennoji-ku, Osaka, 543-0001. It should be postmarked no later than March 8.

The application can also be faxed to (06) 6773-8421 or sent by e-mail to talk3@ih-osaka.or.jp

For more information, call the organization at (06) 6773-8182.

Bangladeshi writer to give public lecture:
Osaka International Foundation is organizing a lecture by Bangladeshi writer Imdadul Haq Milon from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. March 19 at International House, Osaka, in Tennoji Ward.

This is part of a lecture series in which Asian writers whose works are yet to be translated into Japanese are invited to talk about their literature.

Milon is one of few professional writers in Bangladesh and has gained considerable popularity among young people. He will talk about Islamic society in Bangladesh, the Bangladeshi people living away from their country and other issues related to his work and life.

The lecture will be conducted in Bengali. Consecutive interpretation into Japanese will be provided.

Participation is free.

Those wishing to attend must send an application stating their name, address, phone number, and how many people will accompany them to "Asia Sakka Koen Kai Kakari" Osaka International House Foundation at 8-2-6 Uehon-machi, Tennoji-ku, Osaka-shi, 543-0001. The application can also be faxed to (06) 6773-8421 or e-mailed to kikaku@ih-osaka.or.jp

For more information, call the organization at (06) 6773-8182.



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