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Powell Street Festival Society • パウエル祭協会 | Celebrating Japanese Canadian arts and culture since 1977

Wishing You a Happy and Healthy New Year!

From all of us at the Powell Street Festival Society, we hope you will help us make wishes for the coming year. As you may know, darumas are seen as symbols of perseverance and luck. They’re also the unofficial Powell Street Festival mascot! The eyes of the daruma are initially blank. They are meant to be filled in on one side when a wish is made and only completed on both when that wish is fulfilled. 

In the spirit of Powell St Festival, we encourage you to create this gesture of good will to your community, your household, and Paueru Gai. Fold a daruma with whatever paper you have and fill in one eye to make a wish for the future. You can place your daruma in your window, take your daruma around your neighborhood for a photoshoot, or fold some to send to friends and family so they can also make new year’s wishes! 

follow us @powellstfest

Please share your daruma with us through Instagram by tagging @powellstfest_daruma 
Join the movement of goodwill and wishes this 2021! 
Click here to make your own daruma!
As part of our DTES Community Care Program, we have been presenting origami prompts promoting wellness and cultural connection in the DTES. You can enjoy them here:

January Town Halls

This past year has been quite a whirlwind, and I’m sure many of us are looking forward to 2021. The Powell Street Festival team has been busy brainstorming what this coming year will hold for the festival, and we feel it is very important to call upon you to hear your valuable feedback on the 45th Annual Powell Street Festival. 

We invite you to join one or many of our upcoming online Town Halls: 

Thursday, January 7, 7:00 to 8:30 pm 

Wednesday, January 13, 7:00 to 8:30 pm 

Monday, January 18, 7:00 to 8:30 pm 

Tuesday, January 26, 7:00 to 8:30 pm 


Feel free to sign up for one or all, as each Town Hall will help us shape the future of the 2021 celebrations. Save the date, register, and we’ll send you the Zoom link closer to the date! 


The Paueru Gai Dialogues 2021

In a series of 9 online events, BIPOC artists and activists will share their perspectives on current social issues. The project intends to inspire civic engagement and community building during the disruption of the enduring pandemic. The inaugural event, Catalyzing Social Equity through Culture & Connection to Place, is at 1 pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern on Saturday, January 30, 2021

Guest host Izumi Sakamoto will facilitate a discussion with three panellists -- Ayumi Goto, Kathy Shimizu, and Terry Watada -- as they share their perspectives on how cultural heritage and connection to place impact artistic practice. Participants will join breakout groups to share their own experiences and to consider how Japanese Canadian art and culture might advance social justice. To wrap up the event, everyone will reconvene to offer questions for further contemplation. 

The event is free! To register and more information visit:

Excerpt from an interview with Powell St. Festival executive director Emiko Morita about the Paueru Gai Dialogues in The Bulletin Magazine's January Issue:
"...there is an urgent need for the Japanese Canadian community to discuss contemporary social issues. The Black Lives Matter protests and the widening gap between the privileged and marginalized populations have been amplified by the global health crisis. We cannot wait for the pandemic to pass to respond to these needs; this is the opportunity to create safe spaces where we can challenge ourselves to listen to difference and to deepen our understanding of ourselves and others, and to find ways to use any privilege that we might have for positive change. It is exciting to consider that we might take this moment to move beyond our Internment/model minority narrative, and to explore questions of accountability as settler-colonizers as we continue to grapple with our own history of displacement."

The Bulletin will be featuring a regular column reflecting on the Paueru Gai Dialogues throughout 2021.

PowellStFest Holiday Gift Box 

The last day to place orders is JANUARY 26!

Whether it's for your friends, family, or for yourself, these uniquely curated boxes are perfect gifts for the new year. Don't miss your chance to order your PowellStFest Holiday Box!

Featured vendors:

Buy Now
It's also one of the last chances to grab 2018, 2019, and 2020 Powell Street Festival Merchandise. Limited quantities are available so get them before they're gone! 


The Hafu It

Kiyoko + Sakura

The Hafu It is an independently produced podcast, hosted by Kiyoko Sugimoto (she/her) and Sakura Yoshida (she/her). It is a weekly series where the womxn discuss different topics in an unscripted manner. Topics range from the Japanese Canadian experience to what’s Hapa-ning in current affairs and pop culture, all through the lens of two hafu millennials.

Available online, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcast, and many more!

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Thank you again to all of our festival supporters!
You can see the full list on our website!
© *|2021|* *|Powell Street Festival Society|*, All rights reserved.

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