All dressed up and everywhere to go: Now that the Denver Botanic Gardens has unveiled its beautifully reimagined Japanese garden and mounted Kizuna, a summer blockbuster of massive, graceful bamboo installations placed throughout the grounds, it’s ready to celebrate. Tanabata Day, also known as the “star festival,” is a lovely event geared to families and especially children, who, as children’s programmer Laurel Olson points out, aren’t always a focus at the DBG.
To that end, volunteers will lead participants large and small through three activities from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today. The first — and the chief tradition of Tanabata Day in Japan — involves writing wishes on delicate colored strips of paper and hanging them from bamboo branches. At the second station, kids can get hands-on with kamishibai, or Japanese story cards, which plot out a folk tale on a series of illustrated boards; after a presentation, they can create their own stories. The third station is a de rigueur activity for the gardens: a take-home planting of seeds (mizuna, in this case).
You won’t find a more child-friendly crash course in Japanese culture. All Tanabata Day activities are included in the DBG gate ad-mission of $9 to $12.50 (members and children ages two and under admitted free); visit www.botanicgardens.org or call 720-865-3500. The Gardens are at 1007 York Street.
Sat., July 7, 2012