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Powell Street Festival Society



Festival Connect is a cultural-sharing program that will bring together intergenerational Japanese Canadians through a shared interest in Japanese Canadian art, culture and history. PSFS will present an on-location streaming service during the BC Day Long Weekend so Japanese Canadians from across the country can experience the 46th Powell Street Festival from the comfort of their homes. The development of the program includes consultation and networking with JC survivors. The key activities are 1) outreach to Japanese Canadian community centres and service organizations; 2) consultation with seniors to ensure the festival live-stream is relevant and impactful; and 3) the broadcast of the festival program. There is reciprocal benefit to survivors and younger generations of Japanese Canadians who share the legacy of Internment (detailed below).

Phase 1 – January to March, 2022
Outreach to identify seniors homes and cultural and service organizations that might have an interest in PSFS’s cultural-sharing opportunities. We will enhance our database and circulate a survey, if/when a positive response is received, there will be a meeting for a deeper exploration of their stakeholders’ needs and appropriate PSFS program stream. Organizations include NAJC regional branches, and seniors homes with identified populations of JC and Japanese speaking residents, such as Momiji (Toronto), Niko Niko (Surrey), Nikkei Seniors (Burnaby), Wisteria Place (Steveston). The program coordinator will also use the BC Redress site as a resource.

As a preliminary step in preparation for this grant, PSFS and Nikkei Home determined that the vision of intergenerational cultural sharing and the ultimate live stream is a good fit for their residents. In addition, we were inspired to launch the resurrection of the JC seniors’ Radio Taiso demonstration at the Sunday opening of Powell Street Festival. This exemplifies how our Phase 1 outreach will determine the fulsome execution of Festival Connect.

Phase 2 – April to July 2022
PSFS is developing a JC Volunteer Cohort program that will invite Japanese Canadian (JC) youth from across Canada to participate in a cultural exchange program April through August 2022. The Cohort program includes cultural sharing with JC seniors, visits to JC historic and cultural sites, PSFS’s Cultural Workers Training, and volunteer experience during Powell Street Festival. This application and budget only includes the cultural sharing component with JC seniors.

The JC Festival Cohort (along with their local Sansei minders) will have a field trip to Steveston and another to Nikkei Museum. Preliminary discussions with Steveston’s Japanese Cultural Centre, Tonari Gumi and Nikkei Home, confirmed interest in scheduling picnics or afternoon teas in which festival stories and conversation can provide PSF insight into favourite festival aspects to be captured in the live stream, build interest in the forthcoming Festival Connect live stream, and provide the JC Festival Cohort an opportunity to meet Internment Survivors, enhancing the participants connection to their heritage and furosato/hometown.

Phase 3 – August 2022
The live stream and post-event feedback and reporting are the final phase.

The Festival Connect live stream will be free and accessible to anyone with an internet connection. Phase 1 and 2 will establish the network for broad distribution. The live stream will feature on-location reporting in Japanese and English, have a selection of the stage performances and a survey of the festival booths and other activities based on input from Phase 2. An automated closed caption option will be available.

PSFS will garner feedback from participants via surveys and one-on-one conversations. The hope is that Festival Connect will be one of the positive take-aways from our pandemic pivots and become permanently and sustainably integrated into our festival program.

  • Listing ID: 1541
  • Primary Applicant: Powell Street Festival Society
  • Event or Completion Date: Wednesday, August 31, 2022
  • Approved Amount: $5,000
  • Location: Vancouver, BC