Berkeley Peace Lanterns
The East Bay Peace Lantern Ceremony is an annual peace event where participants decorate lanterns that are floated on the Aquatic Park lagoon in Berkeley at sunset. It is similar to the Japanese obon ceremony to honor ancestors and the dead. The Berkeley event is observed to coincide with the anniversary of the Hiroshima-Nagasaki bombings. It is a family-friendly event, with participants decorating their own lantern shades.
The Berkeley Peace Lantern Ceremony was created after a member of the city's Peace and Justice Commission returned from a trip to Japan. He had met a World War II survivor who said she used to attend a traditional mantoe nagashi http://www.daigoji.or.jp/e/event/event-s.html#mantoe or Floating Lantern Ceremony every year, but now her health sometimes prevented her attendance. He pledged to attend a lantern ceremony every year on her behalf. The Berkeley event was created to enable him to fulfill that pledge, and all of us to participate in this beautiful and moving commemoration.