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Koyo Matsuri ~ 2023

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It has been 50 years since the idea of the Cowra Japanese Garden and Cultural Centre was first promoted in 1973 and then brought to life with the vision of the Garden's designer Nakajima Ken opened in 1979.

The first construction stage commenced in 1978 funded by donations from the Australian Government, the New South Wales Government, the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Japan World Expo 70 (Osaka) Fund, and various individuals.

Koyo Autumn 2023 Garden.jpg

The final, second stage of construction was from 1984 to 1986. It was funded by donations from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, New South Wales Government, and Japan World Expo 70 (Osaka) Fund and was supported with significant voluntary labour.

At the end of May, we celebrated these last 5 decades, with Koyo Matsuri - Autumn Festival. Mark Baillie, Chairman of the United States Studies Centre, born and educated in Cowra, delivered the third Kōyō Oration on the theme of respect, paying tribute to his father, John Baillie, who was on the first Japanese Garden Committee in the late 1970s.

Bill and Mark Baille_edited.jpg

Kōyō Matsuri Tree planting

Director Bill West with guest speaker Mark Baillie and Family

It is with thanks that we welcomed special guests, Japan's Ambassador to Australia Suzuki Kazuhiro, Mark and Robyn Baillie and family, the Urasenke Sydney Association, Cowra Councillors, members of the community and our network to celebrate with us and to showcase some of the original architectural drawings of the Garden and photos of the building of the first stage.

Up close drawing garden 2023.jpg

We have these images on display in the first room of our cultural centre. Visit now to see this wonderful collection.

Click the link below to view the Oration Speech for Koyo Matsuri 2023

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