Pasadena Buddhist Temple Hosts Virtual Obon Observance

Published on Jul 17, 2020

The Pasadena Buddhist Temple is planning an array of online events Saturday as the COVID-19 pandemic has forced it to move its annual Obon festival to a virtual format.

Obon is an annual tradition based around “honoring our ancestors with our dancing, reflection, and celebration,” the Temple said in a written statement.

“As part of that, we want our virtual experience this year to keep up this tradition, even though we can’t all be together dancing together under the lights, we would like to honor those who have passed with a virtual tribute,” according to the Temple.

But the old tradition will have a new twist this year with the inaugural online version of the event dubbed “Obonathon.”

From Taiko drummers and martial arts demonstrations to tea ceremonies and a silent auction, the Temple has lined up a full evening of activities for the public to take part in, Temple representatives said. A virtual Bon Odori dance party is planned via Zoom, and will also be live streamed via Facebook and YouTube.

Other activities will include a silent auction and surprise guests, organizers said.

For more information, including a schedule and links to sign up for online events, is available at the Tempe’s website at

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