Marking their return to Saipan since their last visit several years ago, the Katori Shrine Group (members of the Katori Shrine in Chiba, Japan) recently hosted the Saipan Katori Shrine Ceremony at the Sugar King Park in Garapan.
Led by its mayor, the Honorable Timonori Ito, the Katori delegation included: Mr. Hiroaki Matsuda, Director of General Policy Department; Mr. Satoshi Ishige, Chief of Planning and Policy Division; Mr. Atsushi Tsukagoshi, Supervisor of Planning and Policy Division; Mr. Tetsu Sakamoto, Staff of Planning and Policy Division; and Mr. Samuel Takuya Hanada, Coordinator for International Relations – Tourism Division.
Governor Arnold Palacios and Lt. Governor David Apatang attended the ceremony and paid witness to the commemorative ritual, performed by Katori Shrine members. Looking forward, these types of programs and cooperative partnerships (sharing of cultural celebrations) aim to bring more tourists from Japan.