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Sunday, Oct. 3, 2010

KANSAI: Who & What

Osaka foodies to kick off Midosuji Gourmet Festival

The inaugural 2010 Midosuji Gourmet Festival promises fun for the whole family from Oct. 8 to 10 in Osaka's Nakanoshima district.

Visitors will taste some of the best international cuisine that Kansai has to offer. The festival will feature American barbecue, Vietnamese, Indian, Chinese, Korean, Thai and Mexican cuisine, Baskin Robbins ice cream and a selection of fine wines, beers and nonalcoholic beverages. There will also be stage performances, music and activities for children.

Proceeds from sales of water at the festival will be donated to the Canadian charity HOPE International Development Agency (www.hope.or.jp/en/).

The festival hours will run from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Oct. 8 and from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Oct. 9 and 10. Admission is free. The venue is an open space on the south side of Osaka City Hall, near Exit 1 of Yodoyabashi Station on the Midosuji subway line.

For details, send an e-mail to info@midosuji-gurume.com or visit the organizer's website at midosuji-gurume.com/ (in Japanese and English).

Kyoto Film Festival to show samurai films

The Seventh Kyoto Film Festival will screen a selection of samurai movies from Wednesday to Oct. 11.

Various films depicting heroes from around the end of the Edo Period will be shown at Gion Kaikan in Higashiyama Ward and Kyoto Cinema in Shimogyo Ward. On Oct. 6, an opening ceremony and special screening of the new film "Sakuradamongai no Hen" will be held at Kyoto Kaikan in Sakyo Ward.

Tickets are ¥800 in advance and ¥1,000 at the door. Advance tickets can be purchased at ticket agency Pia.

For programs and further information, access the organizer's website at www.kyoto-filmfes.jp/ (in Japanese).

Visit a botanical garden or learn to use 'furoshiki'

Nishinomiya City International Association is seeking participants for a picnic to Nishinomiya's Kitayama Botanical Garden on Oct. 17 and a workshop on how to use "furoshiki" (wrapping cloths) on Oct. 23 from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.

On Oct. 17, participants will meet staff in front of the ticket gate at JR Nishinomiya Station at 10:30 a.m. and travel to Kitayama Botanical Garden by bus. It will be a potluck picnic, so participants are urged to bring a dish to share. Participation is ¥600 and the picnic is reserved for non-Japanese.

Furoshiki are traditional wrapping cloths often used to carry gifts and other items. Participants should bring a furoshiki or a large, square, scarflike cloth to practice with. Participation is ¥300 for nonmembers and ¥200 for association members. The venue is a meeting room on the fourth floor of Frente Nishinomiya, which is near Nishinomiya Station on the JR Kobe Line.

For both events, advance registration is required by phone or e-mail. Twenty people for each event will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. The deadline for the Oct. 17 picnic applications is Oct. 14. For more information and applications, send an e-mail to niasakura@ceres.ocn.ne.jp or contact the organizer at (0798) 32-8680.

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