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Vancouver’s Japanese Nikkei Matsuri Festival in Burnaby

Nikkei Matsuri in Burnaby

The Nikkei Matsuri is a Japanese festival at Burnaby‘s Nikkei Museum and Cultural Centre. It’s usually on the Labour Day Weekend in September.

In 2022 the festival takes place on the weekend of September 3rd and 4th.


In this article you’ll find the following information about Nikkei Matsuri:

When is the Nikkei Matsuri? | Where is the Nikkei Matsuri? | Festival Admission | Nikkei Matsuri ActivitiesOther Information


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Nikkei Matsuri Japanese Festival

“Matsuri” in Japanese means “festival” and the Nikkei Matsuri is indeed a traditional-style Japanese festival. In 2020 the festival took place on the Fridays and Saturdays of August 7th & 8th and 21st & 22nd, as well as on September 4th & 5th. However, the event format had to be revised because of COVID-19.

The event took place in 2021 on the weekend of September 4th & 5th. It was smaller than usual. This year, all things going according to plan, the festival is happening in its regular, larger format on the Saturday and Sunday of September 3rd and 4th.

In normal years at the event there are tea ceremonies, numerous performances, a marketplace, food vendors and a variety of family-friendly activities. In years with good weather, as many as 14,000 people attend over the course of the weekend.


Labour Day Weekend Activities


When is the Nikkei Matsuri?

The Nikkei Matsuri normally takes place on the last Saturday and Sunday of the summer, just before kids return to school, so on the Labour Day weekend.

Different from usual, in 2020, in addition to taking place on the September holiday weekend, it also happened on the Fridays and Saturday of August 7th & 8th and 21st & 22nd. On all three weekends, however, it was a smaller event than in previous years because of the coronavirus pandemic.

In 2022 the festival is scheduled for the Saturday and Sunday of September 3rd and 4th. The festival runs from 11:00 am until 7:00 pm on both days.


Where is the Nikkei Matsuri?

The Nikkei Matsuri is held at the Nikkei National Museum and Cultural Centre at 6688 Southoaks Crescent. The venue is a short drive west of Metrotown just off Kingsway in Burnaby.


Parking & Transportation

Limited parking is available at the Nikkei Centre’s underground parkade for about $10 per day. Free parking in nearby neighbourhoods may also be available. Guests can also take public transit as the location is easily accessible.


Nikkei Matsuri at Nikkei Centre
Nikkei Matsuri Outside the Nikkei Centre


Festival Admission

In 2022 admission to the festival is free for children under 18 years old and for seniors over the age of 64. However, paid tickets are required for adults between the ages of 18 and 64. Tickets cost $8 when purchased online in advance, or $10 at the door of the festival. All tickets grant access to both days of the festival.


Nikkei Matsuri Activities

In 2022 the Nikkei Matsuri is a Japanese community festival featuring a wide range of activities including live performances and a Game Zone, as well as a small marketplace, Food Truck Plaza, a Japanese used book sale and opportunities to try on a yukata (which is a type of summer kimono).


Matsuri Performances

Entertainment at the Nikkei Matsuri on the Labour Day weekend includes performances by various local singing and dance groups, Taiko drummers and other performers. Some performances are usually indoors and some are outside in the garden.


Matsuri Game Zone

Popular with children at the Nikkei Matsuri is the Game Zone, which includes a variety of simple midway-type games where you buy tokens to play and have the chance to win prizes. Game Zone activities in 2022 include ring toss, balloon darts, bean bag toss and other games that young kids enjoy.


Miyake-kai Taiko Drummers
Miyake-kai Taiko Drummers at the Nikkei Matsuri


2022 Festival Performers

Highlights of the 2022 Nikkei Matsuri include the following activities and performances (with exact details subject to change):


On the Saturday (September 3, 2022)

  • 12:00 pm Opening Ceremonies
  • 12:30 pm Rakuichi
  • 1:00 pmVancouver Shomonkai Aikido
  • 1:30 pm Ishikawa Family Judo Club
  • 2:00 pmSouthern Wave Okinawan Music & Dance Society
  • 2:30 pmOtowa-Ryu Japanese Dance
  • 3:00 pmBon Odori With Satsuki-Kai & Chibi-Taiko
  • 4:30 pmChibi Taiko
  • 5:00 pmIaido – Seishin Kan
  • 5:30 pmShorinji Kenpo
  • 6:00 pmShootingstar Idols


Vancouver Okinawa Taiko Drummers
Vancouver Okinawa Taiko


On the Sunday (September 4, 2022)

  • 12:00 pm Rakuichi
  • 1:00 pmSatsuki-Kai Japanese Dance
  • 1:45 pm Shito-Ryuseiko-Kai Karate Canada
  • 2:00 pmPico & Chihiro Music Duo
  • 2:15 pmRenbu Dojo Kendo
  • 2:45 pmShion Skye Carter
  • 3:00 pmBon Odori With Satsuki-Kai & Bushido
  • 4:30 pmBushido
  • 5:00 pmKotonone Kai
  • 5:30 pmVancouver Okinawa Taiko


To learn about all the activities and performances click Nikkei Matsuri 2022 Event Guide.


Other Information

For more information on the festival see the Nikkei Matsuri website and for details on the venue and organization behind the event see our article about the Nikkei National Museum and Cultural Centre.

For a list of other events taking place in the Lower Mainland this month and at other times of the year see Vancouver’s September Calendar or Festivals & Events Calendar.

Other articles that might be of interest include the following: