Newport’s Black Ships Festival is an annual celebration of the long and friendly trading partnership between the United States and Japan. The festival is named in reference to the Japanese word for foreign ships, “Kurofune,” which translates to “Black Ships” in English.
The event commemorates the historic Treaty of Kanagawa, negotiated by Commodore Matthew Perry, that opened trade with Japan in 1854. Black Ships is also a celebration of the friendly relationship between Newport and her Japanese Sister City, Shimoda.
The annual Black Ships Festival has been a Newport tradition since 1983. The popular, multi-day celebration offers a variety of fun and fascinating events emphasizing Japanese art and culture. Highlights include a formal Gala at Rosecliff, sake tastings, martial arts and craft demonstrations, and the always exhilarating Taiko Drums. (more…)