It may not seem like there are many opportunities to go out and wear kimono, aside from a yearly matsuri or two. After some digging around the internet, I've found a lot of upcoming events in the Western Washington area! I'm actually pretty excited. I've found that some good resources to find events are your local Consulate General of Japan and the Japan America Society of your state.
Also, look to see if you have any Japanese cultural groups. I've found many events by looking at events calenders for chado, taiko, and Japanese dance (Nihon buyo) groups in my area, as well as the local Japanese garden. I've found that the Japanese culture groups hold performances at ethnic festivals, and several colleges and universities hold cultural festivals throughout the year. Also, look to see if you have any Japanese Buddhist temples or Shinto shrines. I know there aren't very many Shinto shrines in America, but north of Seattle we are lucky to have a GORGEOUS shrine set in serene setting next to a waterfall.
The Japanese gardens are a surprising good source for yearly events. Not not to mention it is a beautiful setting to attend an event in kimono. My local garden holds chado demonstrations and has festivals for Kodomo no Hi, Tanabata, and Tsukimi.
Anime conventions are also good events to go to. Unfortunately I am no longer interested in anime, so I won't be paying the $60 to go this year. I do know that they will have dance performances, a kimono workshop, and a booth selling vintage kimono. I went many years ago with a co-worker and her daughter. I dressed her daughter in yukata and I dressed as a "samurai-ko" (female samurai). We saw a handful of people wearing kimono: 2 girls dressed as maiko (they were on break from a performance) and a large group of people dressed as Shinsengumi. The Shinsengumi group were impressed with my kimono and posed with me for pictures. The only problem I had with the event was that the exhibitor hall was crowded and I kept hitting people with my kamishimo.
If you are in the Seattle area and looking for upcoming events, I've included a calender at the bottom of my blog. I don't know how long I will maintain it, Google Calenders seems kind of tedious to me! I am keeping more on top of maintaining upcoming events from my Facebook page. I don't know if the Facebook badge is working properly in the menu on the right of my blog, if not you can find my Facebook page here or by searching for "Amanda - Kimono Life". I will also update my blog as events come up!
I look forward to reading about everyone else's kimono and Japanese culture events - all over the world!