First Viewing ceremony to celebrate Opening Day 2015

Ceremonial offerings on Moon Viewing Platform
Ceremonial offerings on Moon Viewing Platform

Shinto ceremonial offerings to the kami on the Moon Viewing platform.

Join us on Sunday, March 1 at 11 a.m., as the Seattle Japanese Garden celebrates First Viewing, a re-opening event welcoming the general public inside the gates for the first time in 2015.

First Viewing begins with the dramatic flair of a Shinto blessing.  A formal ceremony conducted in Japan since ancient times, the Shinto blessing will usher in auspicious ki --life energy-- for a successful new year.   We will also "pray all visitors are deeply nourished, enriched and invigorated by visiting the Seattle Japanese Garden," says Reverend Koichi Barrish of Tsubaki Grand Shrine in Granite Falls, WA, who'll be conducting this annual rite.

Trained guides will be available to give complimentary tours of the Seattle Japanese Garden, deepening the experience of strolling the garden by sharing insights on the garden's history, design, and spiritual principles.  The 45-minute tours begin at the ticket booth starting at noon, 1 p.m., and 2 p.m.

The Tateuchi Community Room will also have its doors open to the public.  Visitors can enjoy a cup of tea while taking in a juried photography exhibit curated by artist and instructor Ray Pfortner, featuring the best of Fall color images in the garden submitted by his students.

The event is free with garden admission: $6 for adults 18-64, $4 for youths 6–17, senior adults 65+, college students with ID, and people with disabilities, and free for kids younger than 6. Annual Passes may be used to gain entry to the event.