Koreto Yamauchi is bringing a taste of Japan to Saskatchewan.
The President of the Regina Japanese Canadian Club is organizing a Japanese summer festival called Matsuri at the University of Regina this weekend to help people in the area learn more about Japanese culture.
Yamauchi grew up in Japan and now lives in the Queen City. He said he was attracted to the slower pace and work-life balance in the smaller Canadian city.
'It's not only about sushi'
While he said he loves Regina, he still misses some aspects of the life he knew back home.
"I realized there are a lot of people who are interested in Japanese culture," Yamauchi said. "(But) not everything is true. It's not only about sushi. There are a lot of interesting things they don't know about so I want them to know those things and enjoy them."
When he first arrived, Yamauchi said he was surprised to see = there was no Japanese pavilion at Mosaic. Later, he realized the local Japanese community was too small to host such a big event.
"I was thinking, maybe we could do our own event," he said.
That turned out to be an idea that caught on well. Along with Yamauchi, others also wanted to share their Japanese traditions.
"I like Japanese culture, but I like life here. So it is like a perfect combination," he said.
The free festival will bring together food, drinks, games and performances on Sunday from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. CST at the Riddell Centre on the U of R campus.
Food will include udon, takoyaki and Japanese hotdogs. There will be activities like water yo-yo, mask painting and origami.
On the stage, there will be dancers, martial art demonstrations and the city's Taiko drumming club.
"When they play in the room, it is astonishing," Yamauchi said. "You will be surprised how good they are."
While it's the first year of the festival, Yamauchi said he hopes it is successful enough to host again next year.
The festival was sponsored by City of Regina and Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan.