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Old Sep 4, 2013, 12:35 AM   #1
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Default Reflections: The Toro Nagashi or Floating Lantern Ceremony

One of the most traditional Japanese ceremonies is the Toro Nagashi or Floating Lantern Ceremony. One of the most publicized is the one carried out at our Ala Moana Beach Park. The lanterns with lit candles are released into the ocean or river to honor the dead.

It is quite moving and is usually attended by many thousands of spectators including many Japanese nationals.

While floating in the evening light the lanterns have an ethereal quality.



Here is a shot which shows the setting more completely.

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Old Sep 4, 2013, 12:52 AM   #2
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Beautiful!!!!! Nice work. I have wanted to catch this over in Berkeley, CA but have missed it.
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Old Sep 4, 2013, 9:08 AM   #3
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Two beautiful shots, Selvin. Must be a "sight to see".
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Old Sep 5, 2013, 10:45 PM   #4
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Beautiful!!! Would love to see this.
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Old Sep 6, 2013, 4:24 AM   #5
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Walter, MtnGal, Curmudgeon,
Thanks for you kind comments.
It is a very moving ceremony. Over the years, spectacular performances by Hawaiian and Japanese music and dance groups have been added to the event. You may include the name(s) of any loved ones on these lanterns by standing in line and awaiting your turn earlier in the day. Furthermore it is all free. Any donations given are returned to the City and County of Honolulu to help clean up and maintain the Beach park.

If you are not able to come to Hawaii to see the event usually held near memorial day, view the following video located at:

http://www.lanternfloatinghawaii.com/page/videos

I must warn you that although it is probably the best visual description of the event it is over one and a half hours long.

Mahalo again
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Old Sep 6, 2013, 8:50 AM   #6
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I really like your second shot. Well done. Perfect exposure. I thought the black on the right was end of pier until I saw it was someone standing in the water with backpack on. If only they had moved it would have been even better capturing all the floaters they were covering.

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Old Sep 6, 2013, 9:33 AM   #7
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Just beautiful!
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Old Sep 6, 2013, 10:18 PM   #8
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Very lovely and moving. Only thing I would have done is change the order you posted. Showing just how large the ceremony was first and then the close up explaining the meaning of it all.
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Old Sep 7, 2013, 4:08 AM   #9
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Great shots Selvin. Tried to attend but was intimidated by the gigantic crowd and ended up shooting from Kewalo with a long lens (too far).
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Old Sep 8, 2013, 12:28 AM   #10
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CalicaJun, I agree with your observation about the sequence.
Bynx, I even thought about cropping the person out.
Bobbert, Thanks for your comment
Paniolo, This was actually from 2012. I generally brave the crowds and go right up to the water's edge most of the time. there's always a group of photographers you get to see each year.
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