nanbu_01The 2017 Japan America Grassroots Summit will be held in Nara, an ancient capital city that treasures its people alongside its traditional architecture including Buddhist statues, temples, and shrines. Some of them were designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites and Japanese National Treasures.

The Japan-America Grassroots Summit is an annual large-scale meeting of Japanese and American citizens, held alternately in Japan and America. It celebrates the historic friendship between Nakahama Manjiro and Captain William Whitfield.

Whitfield rescued the marooned Manjiro in 1841 and shared his own home with him. Later, Manjiro’s rare command of English and salutary experience in America became pivotal to the Japan/US relationship after Perry’s arrival in 1853.

Each year, Japanese prefectures and American states alternate as hosts for about a week, sharing their homes and the unique features of their communities. More than 100 people usually participate as guests, enjoying sight-seeing, cultural activities, welcome and closing ceremonies, and staying with a host family. The guests and hosts make meaningful memories together in the spirit of Omotenashi – uninhibited hospitality and friendship.



June 2017

26 (Mon.) Depart America
27 (Tue.) Arrive in Nara
28 (Wed.) Optional Local Tour
Opening Ceremony at Kinsho Hall of Todai-ji Temple
Opening Reception at Nara Royal Hotel
29 (Thu.) Watch “deer gathering” at Nara Park
Local Sessions Begin
Homestay in local community
30 (Fri.) Local Session
Homestay in local community


1 (Sat.) Local Session or spend whole day with host family
Homestay in local community
2 (Sun.) Closing Ceremony at Noh Theatre
Farewell Reception at Japanese Garden
3 (Mon.) Leave Nara
Optional Post Summit Program or, Fly back to America

More information

Download the leaflet here. For more information and to apply, visit

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