Sacramento’s 75th Bazaar ReturnsAug. 14 as Online Telethon

Last year, for the first time since the inaugural event in 1947, the Buddhist Church of Sacramento’s annual Japanese Food and Cultural Bazaar was canceled because of the pandemic.


Despite not being able to stage its two-day bazaar to the community as it had for 73 years, the temple organized a program online featuring a wide array of talent. This year, the 2021 online event is similar, with a variety of participants enlisted to commemorate the 75th bazaar.


On Saturday, Aug. 14, the Buddhist Church of Sacramento is hosting a live-streamed telethon event, “Bazaar — At Home Edition,” from noon to 5 p.m. Watch the live event on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/buddhistchurchofsacramento


Viewers can tune in to the program any time during the five-hour period. The schedule and updates will be posted on the church’s website (www.buddhistchurch.org) and on its Facebook page.

Some of what you’ll see:

  • The East Wind Band, a regular favorite of past bazaars;

  • Temple members (all professional artists) showcasing their musical talents, including Merv Maruyama, Alexi Ishida and Kendyl Ito;

  • The Sacramento Taiko Dan Youth Group;

  • Stories about local businesses affiliated with the temple, including Kiyo’s Florist, North American Food Distributing, Osaka-Ya, and the Asian Community Center;

  • Cultural and cooking demonstrations;

  • Get to know Resident Minister Rev. Matthew Hamasaki;

  • Interviews with temple members; and

  • “Where Are They Now” stories of former students who have gone on to successful careers.

Once again, the co-hosts of the event are temple members Koichi Mizushima and former local TV news anchor Sharon Ito.


Commemorative T-shirts, aprons, hoodies, reusable insulated grocery bags and sticker sets with this year’s bazaar logo will be available for orders from July 1 through Aug. 22; pickup and ship dates estimated between Sept. 18 to Oct. 2.


For those of you who miss our bazaar food, a bento meal is available for $20 consisting of sesame chicken, teriyaki beef, korokke, gyoza, edamame, rice, and California roll. The bento is only available online, pre-sold starting July 1 until sold out. Pickup at the church will be on Sunday, Aug. 22, from 1 to 5 p.m. on an hourly schedule.


The bento and merchandise can be ordered online at the betsuin’s website at www.buddhistchurch.org.


The temple welcomes your donations. Donating to the telethon is easily accomplished using one of these methods:


  • Mail a check or money order to the Buddhist Church of Sacramento, 2401 Riverside Blvd., Sacramento, CA 95818;

  • Call in during the live program at 916-446-0121 and contribute using your credit card; and

  • Pay online using the “Donate” button on the church’s website at: www.buddhistchurch.org

Since 1947, the bazaar has become one of the largest Japanese cultural events in the Sacramento region, featuring a variety of food, cultural exhibits and demonstrations, and games for children.


Last year’s global pandemic caused a situation that made the temple pivot and repurpose the bazaar, the major fundraiser of the year. Proceeds support the many programs and activities offered at the church and fund general operating expenses.