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Missouri Botanical Garden preparing for 47th Japanese Festival

ST. LOUIS – It’s time to celebrate the final days of summer this Labor Day weekend and the Missouri Botanical Garden is getting ready for its annual Japanese Festival.

The performers arrived in town from overseas and the vendors are getting set for Saturday’s start of the Japanese Festival at the Missouri Botanical Garden. It’s one of the largest Japanese gardens in the United States and this celebration has grown to the biggest of its kind in the nation.

“We have an expanded food court. More food options we are more options we have some new performance as we have a group coming from Japan, which is in a parade in the style of musical entertainment,” said Adam Jaschek, senior events coordinator for MoBOT. “We have a ninja coming this year to demonstrate the art of ninjutsu. So we're excited about new things going.”

The festival will also host a kimono fashion show, lantern lighting, and more over the course of the three-day event. The botanical garden is even offering guided tours of the private Teahouse Island, a secluded spot not usually open to the public.

“It is very secluded and the teahouse is a gift from Nagano to the state of Missouri,” said Ben Chu, the horticulturalist supervisor. “It’s a delicate structure. We try to protect it as much as we can. Any work we do to it we want to make sure it's as authentic as possible.”