fbpx Destination Asia Festival | The Morton Arboretum

Destination Asia Festival

Slideshow

  • Paper lanterns floating on the water used in a Toro Nagashi ceremony
  • Sumo wrestlers competing
  • Trees in the China Collection at The Morton Arboretum
  • China Collection at The Morton Arboretum
  • A  henna tattooer tattooing the hand of a visitor

Schedule and Location

Friday, August 2, through Sunday, August 4, 2019
Friday, opening evening: 6:00 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Visitor Center area

Included in Arboretum admission. 

Explore the diverse cultures of Asia through music, dance, food, and more.  Join us for a fun-filled weekend that will transport you across the globe.

On Friday, kick off our sixth annual Destination Asia festival with a formal ceremony, engaging performances, culinary delights, and a breathtaking Japanese lantern display, Toro Nagashi, on Meadow Lake. 

Did you know The Morton Arboretum has a vast tree and shrub collection from Asian countries? Explore our tree collections from China, Japan, and Korea and learn about the important conservation efforts with which the Arboretum  participates. 

Performer and Activity Schedule

Friday, August 2

6:00 p.m.                             Welcome and brief talk about The Morton Arboretum's collaborations with Asian countries by Head of Collections and Curator, Matt Lobdell and Director of Center for Tree Science, Chuck Cannon, PhD.
6:00  to 7:00 p.m.              Lantern Decorating, for the Toro Nagashi Ceremony pre-purchased lanterns (if available, lanterns will be for sale as well)
6:00 to  7:30 p.m.              Origami Folding with Marilyn Schweitzer
6:15 p.m.                            Chinese YoYo by Ryan Shi
6:30 p.m.                            Sumo Wrestling by USA Sumo
6:30 p.m.                            Japanese ensemble music by Chicgo Koto Group
7:00 p.m.                            Chinese Lion Dance by Seven Star Lion
7:30 p.m.                            Korean Drumming by Global Pungmol Institute
7:30 p.m.                            Asian fusion music by Hanatua Duo
7:30 p.m.                            Taiko Drumming and Shubu-kai dance performance by Asian Improv aRts Midwest
8:00 p.m.                            Toro Nagashi Ceremony

Saturday, August 3

Enjoy performances and activities all day during our fifth annual Destination Asia Festival with 4 stages, a vendor expo, food trucks and Asian cuisine, martial arts, and more!

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m      Origami, plants of Asia, and more in the Sterling Morton Library
10:00 to 4:00 p.m.              Henna tattoos, Neelman Akhand
                                              Bonsai show with Prairie State Bonsai Society

10:00 a.m.                           Classical Asian fusion music by Hanauta Duo 

10:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Shubu-kai dance performance, Asian Improv aRts 
10:30 a.m.                            Japanese ensemble music by Chicago Koto Group
10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m.,      Japanese storytelling, Anne Shimojima
and 2:30 p.m.

11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.     Origami folding with Marilyn Schweitzer
11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m   Japanese taiko drumming by Asian Improv aRts Midwest
11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.  Indian dance by Acharya Performing Arts Academy
11:30 a.m and 1:30 p.m.   Ikebana floral demonstration 
11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.  Japanese kyudo archery by Fuko Kyudojo
11:30 a.m and 1:30 p.m.   Amazing Asian Arbor Tales 
11:30 a.m.                           Korean ensemble music by Chicago Gayageum
11:30 a.m.                           Chinese Lion Dance by Seven Star Lion
Noon and 2:00 p.m.          Sumo wrestling by USA Sumo 
Noon                                    Japanese martial arts by Chicago Keikokai Meifu Chinkage Ryu
Noon                                   Traditional Philippine performance by Piyesta Pinoy                                             
12:30 p.m.                          Chinese music by Kerry Leung
1:00 p.m.                             Art of bonsai demonstration with Prairie State Bonsai Society
1:00 p.m.                             Japanese Awa Odori dance by Miko-ren Group 
1:00 p.m.                            Kung Fu performance by Illinois Shaolin Kung Fu School
1:00 p.m.                            Cambodian dance performance by Cambodian Association of Illinois 
1:00 p.m.                            Sumi-E big brush painting by Patricia Larkin Green
2:00 p.m.                            Shinkendo Japanese swordsmanship demonstration by Trevis Crane
2:30 p.m.                            Asian folk music by Shobana
2:30 p.m                             Bollywood dance party, Mandala South Asia Performing Arts 
3:00 p.m.                            Friends of the Gamelan, Indonesian gamelan music 
3:00 p.m.                            Korean drumming, Global Pungmol Institute

Sunday, August 4

10:00 to 4:00 p.m.            Learn to play cricket, Midwest Cricket League
                                            Henna tattoos by Neelam Akhand
                                            Bonsai show with Prairie State Bonsai Society
10:00 a.m. and                  Shubu-kai dance performance, Asian Improv aRts 
12:30 p.m.
10:00 a.m.                          Classical Asian fusion music, Hanauta Duo
10:30 a.m. and                  Sumo wrestling, USA Sumo
12:30 p.m.
10:30 a.m.                          Japanese ensemble music, Chicago Koto Group
                                            “Bollywood Beats” Lavni Indian dance, Me Marathi Dance Group
11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.   Origami folding with Marilyn Schweitzer
11:00 a.m. and                  Japanese taiko drumming, Asian Improv aRts Midwest
1:30 p.m.                           Amazing Asian Arbor Tales 
11:00 a.m.                         Thai dance, Thai Cultural Arts Institute 
11:30 a.m.                         Ikebana floral demonstration
and 1:30 p.m.  
11:30 a.m.                         Korean ensemble music, Chicago Gayageu
                                           Chinese lion dance, Seven Star Lion
12:30 p.m.                        Chinese music by Kerry Leung
                                           Indian fusion music, Prateek Ngaichi Group 
1:00 p.m.                          Indian musical performance, Akshaya Music Academy 
                                           Kung Fu performance, Illinois Shaolin Kung Fu School
1:15 p.m.                          Hindustani-style Indian musical duet, Sneha Goswani and Rajeswari 
2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. Traditional Bali music and dance performance, Chicago Balinese Gamelan 
2:00 p.m.                          Shinkendo Japanese swordsmanship demonstration by Trevis Crane
                                           Indian musical performance, Rameti Group

 

Please note that performance times may change prior to festival date.

Fees and Admission

Destination Asia Festival is included with Arboretum admission. Toro Nagashi, Japanese lanterns, must be purchased. 

Toro Nagashi
Japanese Lanterns

Be a part of the opening ceremony! For $10, members and nonmembers can purchase a lantern. Decorate a lantern between 6:00  and 7:30 p.m. to commemorate a loved one or express a wish for the future! Lanterns will be launched onto the Meadow Lake at 8:00  p.m. Please note: lanterns cannot be returned to the purchaser after the lantern float is completed.

Learn more about the ceremony and purchase lanterns here.