Photo: Samantha Madera/AL DÍA News

Philly’s Japanese House prepares for new season


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Despite Mother Nature’s terrible sense of humor, spring is officially here. For Japanese culture lovers, this means cherry blossoms are almost ready to flourish and the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden is about to open.

The Shofuso Japanese House and Garden, located in Philadelphia’s West Fairmount Park, is a traditional-style Japanese house and nationally-ranked garden. Once it opens for the 2015 season on March 28, 2015, visitors can tour the Japanese house and garden, feed koi fish, and participate in various events until October 31.

The Japanese House, which is now accessible from the Avenue of the Republic, will hold a preview of its summer camp program, on March 29.

New to the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden this summer is an archaeology investigation at the site of the 1876 Japanese garden. For the investigation, funded by the William Penn Foundation, archaeologists will be searching for evidence of sculptures, paths, and plant specimens, as well as the location of the foundation stones from the Japanese Bazaar.

"Shofuso’s archaeological dig is the first part of our master planning process, which we are beginning this year,” Kim Andrews, executive director of the Friends of the Japanese House and Garden, said in statement. “We hope to find enough evidence to recreate or restore the Centennial Garden in time for the 160th anniversary of the opening of the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition on May 16, 2016."

As usual, the popular Sakura Sunday event (part of the annual Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival) will be held on April 12 at the Japanese House and the Horticultural Center grounds.

Other events for the season include a lecture and book signing by Kendall Brown on April 16,  Japanese Garden Workshop: The Wonders of Moss on April 26, Mother’s Day Tea Ceremony on May 10, Father’s Day Family Weekend  on June 21-22, and Family Tanabata Weekend on July 4-5.

For more events, visit the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden website.

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