Good afternoon everyone、 皆さんこんにちは！
Last meeting, we learned a lot about the many holidays in Japan. A common feature of these holidays is that they have a festival (matsuri まつり). Festivals can have many food booths lined up along a path that many people come to buy things and socialize. At other festivals, many Japanese men carry together a huge wooden shrine down the road, sometimes with great energy and spirit. Typically, these events occur in the afternoon or evening. Here is a run down of some specific holidays.
Obon（おぼん） Held either July 15th or August 15th, depending on the region and year, families will reunite to honor their ancestors. Lasts for 3 days. Dances called bon dance（ぼん おどり）are performed.
Tanabata（たなばた） Held either July 7th or August 7th (its because of a mix use of today's standard Calendar and the old calendar of Japan). People will write a wish on a tag called a tanzaku（たんざく）and hang it on bamboo. The wishes are something very important like having success at work, doing well on an important exam, or finding love.
Oshougatsu（おしょうがつ） This is Japan's New Years Holiday, which begins on January 1st. It is a 3-4 day holiday and is consider one of the most important Holidays throughout Japan. They take off from work and have a varity, often traditional, of things to do. In December, not specifically a holiday, people many Japanese will have a bonenkai（ぼねんかい）。They will drink together to forgot the troubles of the past year. During one the days of shougatsu, the Japanese will have a 1st temple visit day. It is called Hatsumoude（はつもうで）. They will literally crowd into a temple on one of these days.
Seijinshiki（せいじんしき） This is the Coming of Age day. It is held every 2nd Monday of January for those who are soon to be turning 20 or have in the past year. This day is to help the Japanese realize that they have become adults.
Kodomo no hi（こどものひ） This is Children's day in Japan, celebrated on May 5th.
Setsubun（せつぶん） Held in February 3rd, that is based on a very old tradition, like some of the others on this list. Throw beans around your house or at a temple to deter evil spirits and demons. It is common to shout oni wa soto, fuku wa uchi！（鬼は外、福は内！）"Demon out, Fortune in"!
Well, as usual, the Japanese Study session is still going on. However on Wednesday the 24th and 3rd, I won't be able to come, however, the room is still reserved and you guys can still gather and study together.