ALERTTraffic & parking around Civic Center will be impacted during the week of 9/24 due to Salesforce’s Dreamforce event. Please plan your travel accordingly.

Thank you

32nd Annual Japanese New Year’s Bell-Ringing Ceremony

Sunday, Dec 31, 2017 
9:30 AM (members only)
11:30 AM (open to the public)
Samsung Hall
Free with museum admission
Ring in the New Year by taking a swing at a 2,100-pound, 16th-century Japanese temple bell. Led by Rev. Gengo Akiba, this inspiring ceremony will include a purification ritual and chanting of the Buddhist Heart Sutra. Rev. Akiba will begin the bell-ringing, and participants may then take turns ringing the bell to leave behind any unfortunate experiences, regrettable deeds or ill luck from the previous year. The bell will be struck 108 times on New Year’s Eve to usher in the New Year and curb the 108 mortal desires (bonno) that, according to Buddhist belief, torment humankind. While you wait your turn, add to our 1,000 origami cranes and make a wish or paint a netsuke (charm) for the year of dog.

First come, first served. Pick up tickets to ring the bell at the entrance of Samsung Hall. Members can enjoy 
earlier admission to this event.

We make every effort to allow all our visitors an opportunity to participate in this ceremony. However, to ensure you have a chance to ring the bell, it is recommended that you arrive at Samsung Hall no later than 12 PM.


Lead funding for the Asian Art Museum’s Cultural Celebrations is generously provided by Kaiser Permanente. Major funding is provided by Bank of America. Additional support for the Bell Ringing Ceremony is provided by The Henri and Tomoye Takahashi Charitable Foundation.