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BKF / Kites of Japan

The Kites of Japan at the Berkeley Kite Festival



Highlighting this year’s festival is a delegation from the Sode-cho Kite-Flying Society of Hamamatsu, Japan. Their traditional “Machijirushi“ kites are indigenous to Hamamatsu and are made from fine paper and bamboo. You’ll meet Japan’s master kite builders and be astounded by their centuries-old traditional kite designs. The Kite Society, Local organizers from Tako Age and the Berkeley Kite Festival are honored to have president of the Japan Kite Association, Masaaki Modegi joining the 2010 delegation to the Berkeley Kite Festival. 


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The kites of Hamamatsu form the center of the city’s annual Matsuri (Festival), in which 170 teams compete in fiercely-contested battles. While the origins of Hamamatsu’s kite traditions date back 448 years, full-scale battles began in 1887.


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Though civic pride is always at stake in the kite battles, today’s Hamamatsu Matsuri is a celebration of the renewal of life and the confirmation of community spirit. It is now customary for younger people to join together to fly a special celebratory kite on which the name of a newborn child and its family name are written. Today the Matsuri in Hamamatus attracts over 1.5 million people each year.

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The Kites of Hamamatsu at our BKF are Made Possible by

  The International Association of Tako Age

Please visit their website @


It is only through the tireless efforts of team leaders Naoki Kaku, Shoko Toma that the Kites of Hamamatus have become such a special part of our Berkeley Kite Festival. 



  Just up the hill from Ray, visitors can get hands-on demonstrations of all the latest products from Ozone Kites, Revolution Kites and Prism Designs. Backing up the demo fields is the giant HighlineKites.com tent, where you can get the best kites. Behind the kite tent you’ll see hundreds of kids enjoying the free kite making and behind them, a designated area along the ridge for families and their kites. Each area of the festival will give you a different taste of what kiting has to offer. If you find that your stomach should start to growl, simply follow ridgeline west to the widest array of food offerings ever seen at the BKF. Need a full meal? How about sushi, Thai food or seafood? Just want a snack? How about corn on the cob, pretzels or our favorite, Ben & Jerry’s ice cream? Everything looks so good, you’ll wish you could have one of each!

Kite Trade Association Member Merchant

American Kitefliers Association Member Merchant