KANSAI WHO & WHAT

Autumn sage festival in Kobe’s herb park

Nunobiki Herb Park in Chuo Ward, Kobe, is holding an autumn sage festival through Nov. 21.

The park grows about 75,000 herbs of some 200 different varieties on a mountain slope, and during the festival some 5,000 sages of 30 varieties are in bloom.

There will be various events, including a display of crafts using sage flowers, music concerts a “kodo” (Japanese incense ceremony) class at 11 a.m. Oct. 31, and a cooking and tasting of paella, a Spanish rice dish, using herbs and other ingredients on Nov. 3 at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The crafts display can be seen every day, while the concerts will be at 2 p.m. on Nov. 3, 7, and 23, and at 11:30 a.m. on Nov. 21.

All events are open on a first-come, first-served basis. Participation is free for all events except the paella cooking and kodo class, which cost 500 yen each.

On the last two days of the festival, visitors will be allowed to pick some of the sage flowers to bring home. Those who wish to participate should go to the sage garden at 1 p.m.

To get to the park, take the Shin-Kobe Ropeway to Nunobiki Herb-en Station from Kitano 1-chome Station, which is a five-minute walk from JR Shin-Kobe Station and the Shin-Kobe subway station.

Admission is 200 yen for adults and 100 yen for elementary and junior high school students. The park will be open between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. every day, except Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays, when it will close at 8:30 p.m.

For more information, call the park at (078) 271-1131.

Short films, videos on show in Kyoto

International short films and video works will be shown from Friday to Oct. 24 at Goethe-Institut Kyoto in Sakyo Ward.

The Kyoto Media Art Weeks 2004 will feature recent works of visual art from Europe, Japan and other parts of the world. There will be five programs, with Program A and B consisting of selected works from the European Media Art Festival in Osnabruck, Germany, one of the leading festivals of experimental films and video art. Program A features eight works on the theme “Stories Behind the Screen,” while Program B shows 12 works under the title “The (Re-) Constructed Image.” Program C is a collection of 15 music videos from International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, another competition in Germany.

The other two programs focus on Japanese artists. Program D introduces award-winning works from BACA-JA, or Broadband Arts & Contents Award Japan 2004, a competition for students at art schools and universities, while Program E groups eight works by professional artists mainly from the Kansai region.

Admission to each program is 600 yen, except for Program D, which is free.

Each program will be aired twice; Program A will be shown at 5 p.m. Friday, and 3 p.m. Oct. 24; Program B at 7 p.m. Saturday and 5 p.m. Oct. 24′ Program C at 7 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday; Program D at 3 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday; and Program E at 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Oct. 24.

The venue is a six-minute walk from Marutamachi Station or an eight-minute walk from Demachiyanagi Station, both on the Keihan Line.

For more information, call Goethe-Institut Kyoto at (075) 761-2188.

Osaka international school stages festival Osaka YMCA International School is inviting people to its food and entertainment festival Saturday at Atrium Plaza in the ORC 200 commercial complex in Minato Ward.

The school, also in Minato Ward, is the city’s first international education facility. It was founded in 2001 and currently accepts children between the ages of 3 and 12.

The festival, organized by the school’s students and teachers, as well as local high school students and foreign residents, will feature such attractions as music and dance performances and international food stalls.

The festival will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Entrance is free. Reservations are not required.

The venue is near Bentencho Station on the JR Loop Line or the subway Chuo line.

For more information, call the organizer at (06) 6773-8182, or fax (06) 6773-8421.

Free haircuts for non-Japanese students The Kyoto City International Foundation is offering free haircuts for non-Japanese students in Kyoto.

A group of professional barbers and hairdressers will provide their services Nov. 16 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the organizer’s facility in Sakyo Ward.

The offering is reserved for non-Japanese students living in the city of Kyoto and attending colleges or language schools. Reservations are required. Sixty people will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

For applications and more information, call the organizer at (075) 752-3511.