Cherry Blossom Festival 2014

On April 20th, Murasame-kai held a Karuta Workshop & Demo event at the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival 2014. This was our third participation in the festival.

Our special guest for this year’s was Mr. Takao Ito, who is most known for winning the championship in the very first national Karuta tournament in Japan. He has also traveled all over Japan and overseas to teach and evangelize Karuta. We were a bit nervous in the beginning as he is such a high-profile player, but it turned out that he was very actually very friendly and easy going person. We were very inspired by him and also enjoyed talking with him.

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Mr. Ito teaching one of Murasame-kai members proper way to swipe a card.

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Mr. Ito also participated in the demo as a reciter. We were so moved by his powerful yet beautiful voice.
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Actually, not just Mr. Ito, but all Murasame-kai members did great job entertaining the guests, explaining about Karuta, teaching how to play, etc.

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These two were practing memorization of card positions. They first memorized positions of 50 cards which were randomly placed, then, flipped them to their back. Here they were checking if they had memorized precise position of each card.

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We also enjoyed playing chirashi-dori, which is a more casual style of competitive Karuta.

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The best part of the event is always the demonstration by advanced players. All of the participants did awesome job again this year! I highly enourage everyone to watch the full video.

Thank you all for supporting this event!

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