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Friendship and Culture: Yokota participates in local Tanabata celebration

Airmen from Yokota Air Base help carry a mikoshi shrine with their Japanese friends during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. The festival gives Yokota members an opportunity to meet and build friendships with the local community while experiencing Japanese culture. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)

Airmen from Yokota Air Base help carry a mikoshi shrine with their Japanese friends during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. The festival gives Yokota members an opportunity to meet and build friendships with the local community while experiencing Japanese culture. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)

Local residents prepare to set down their mikoshi shrine during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Each year, members of Yokota join the festival to participate in the Japanese tradition and foster relationships with the local community. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Local residents prepare to set down their mikoshi shrine during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Each year, members of Yokota join the festival to participate in the Japanese tradition and foster relationships with the local community. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Festival decorations hang down during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. This year marked the 64th annual Tanabata Festival in Fussa, and attracted people from all over the surrounding area. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Festival decorations hang down during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. This year marked the 64th annual Tanabata Festival in Fussa, and attracted people from all over the surrounding area. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Col. Scott Maskery, 374th Mission Support Group commander, carries a mikoshi shrine with airmen in front of Fussa City Hall, Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. Multiple shrines were carried from the Fussa shinmei-sha, shinto shrine, to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)

Col. Scott Maskery, 374th Mission Support Group commander, carries a mikoshi shrine with airmen in front of Fussa City Hall, Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. Multiple shrines were carried from the Fussa shinmei-sha, shinto shrine, to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)

A street vendor hands change back to a customer at the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Vendors featuring a variety of foods lined the streets for festival participants to enjoy. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

A street vendor hands change back to a customer at the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Vendors featuring a variety of foods lined the streets for festival participants to enjoy. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Sake vendors prepare drinks at the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Tanabata is the Japanese star festival originating from the Chinese Qixi Festival, celebrating the meeting of the stars Vega and Altair. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Sake vendors prepare drinks at the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Tanabata is the Japanese star festival originating from the Chinese Qixi Festival, celebrating the meeting of the stars Vega and Altair. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

A street vendor cooks noodles at the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Vendors featuring a variety of foods lined the streets for festival participants to enjoy.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

A street vendor cooks noodles at the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Vendors featuring a variety of foods lined the streets for festival participants to enjoy. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

The Air Force Band of the Pacific performs at Fussa City Hall during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. The festival included several parades as well as street vendors selling a variety of traditional Japanese festival foods. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

The Air Force Band of the Pacific performs at Fussa City Hall during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. The festival included several parades as well as street vendors selling a variety of traditional Japanese festival foods. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Participants in the Fussa Tanabata Festival parade play instruments as they make their way to Fussa City Hall, Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Multiple mikoshi shrines were carried from Shinmeisya Shrine to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Participants in the Fussa Tanabata Festival parade play instruments as they make their way to Fussa City Hall, Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. Multiple mikoshi shrines were carried from Shinmeisya Shrine to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Local residents carry a mikoshi shrine in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013, during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. The festival included traditional Japanese dance performances and groups carrying mikoshi shrines from Shinmeisya Shrine to Fussa City Hall. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)
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Local residents carry a mikoshi shrine in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013, during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. The festival included traditional Japanese dance performances and groups carrying mikoshi shrines from Shinmeisya Shrine to Fussa City Hall. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

A performer shoots ribbon out to the crowd in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013, during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. The festival included traditional Japanese dance performances and groups carrying mikoshi shrines.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)
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A performer shoots ribbon out to the crowd in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013, during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. The festival included traditional Japanese dance performances and groups carrying mikoshi shrines. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

A boy looks out from a mobile stage during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. The stages featured traditional Japanese characters such as the fox and oni, a Japanese demon, as part of the festivities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)
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A boy looks out from a mobile stage during the Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2013. The stages featured traditional Japanese characters such as the fox and oni, a Japanese demon, as part of the festivities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Meagan Schutter/Released)

Mikoshi shrine carriers hoist their shrine with their kids at Fussa city, Japan,  Aug. 8, 2014. Multiple shrines were carried from the Fussa shinmei-sha, shinto shrine, to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)
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Mikoshi shrine carriers hoist their shrine with their kids at Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. Multiple shrines were carried from the Fussa shinmei-sha, shinto shrine, to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)

Mikoshi shrine carriers hoist their shrine with their kids at Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. Multiple shrines were carried from the Fussa shinmei-sha, shinto shrine, to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)
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Mikoshi shrine carriers hoist their shrine with their kids at Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. Multiple shrines were carried from the Fussa shinmei-sha, shinto shrine, to City Hall during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Released)

Japanese and American mikoshi shrine carriers chant and clap during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival, Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. The festival gives Yokota members an opportunity to meet and build friendships with the local community while experiencing Japanese culture. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Relased)
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Japanese and American mikoshi shrine carriers chant and clap during the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival, Fussa city, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014. The festival gives Yokota members an opportunity to meet and build friendships with the local community while experiencing Japanese culture. (U.S. Air Force photo by Osakabe Yasuo/Relased)

YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- Members of Team Yokota participated in the ceremonial opening parade of the 64th annual Fussa Tanabata Festival in Fussa City, Japan, Aug. 8, 2014.  Yokota Airmen took turns carrying a "mikoshi," a portable Shinto shrine, on their shoulders through the streets of Fussa as part of the festival.  Following the opening parade, Team Yokota members had the opportunity to watch a parade of various Japanese dancers and enjoy a number of street vendors selling food, drinks and various items.
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