Events

Silver Week in Japan

Sep 17th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events

All that glitters is not gold, in this case it’s silver and the name of the newest grouping of holidays on the Japanese calendar.  Golden Week in Japan takes place in late April or early May each year and, like Silver Week, it incorporates a number of national holidays into a short period.  Both weeks [...]



Where to see Noh in Japan

Aug 17th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events, History & Culture

It’s art in the park, Japanese style…one of Japan’s oldest traditional performing arts will be enacted in the shadows of historic Osaka Castle in the Kansai region of Japan this month but you can also witness it outdoors on Sado Island and in Tokyo or Okinawa in a more traditional setting at various times throughout [...]



Setomono Ichi – Ceramic Fair

Aug 4th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events

For three days in early August the streets of Ningyocho in Tokyo are transformed into a haven for those who love Japanese dishes and decorative ceramics.  Tented booths line the sidewalks on either side of Ningyocho-dori and area wholesalers sell their wares to the public at deeply discounted prices. I picked up two sets of  [...]



Tokyo Garden Parties with Beer!

Jul 31st, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events, Tokyo and Vicinity

Tokyo beers gardens can be found in parks and on building rooftops throughout the city  and there’s nothing better than enjoying a cold beer, or two, with friends on a warm summer evening in the city. Social and business networking on Tokyo has now been taken to a new level with the creation of the [...]



Bon Odori Taikai in Shinagawa

Jul 29th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events, History & Culture

“Bon Odori is a Japanese Buddhist Folk Dance performed outdoors and danced in concentric circle around a raised platform called a Yagura“* Late July and early August is Obon season in Japan, a time when Buddhists honor their ancestors with Obon Festivals and Bon Odori (Bon dances) that stems from the tale on a monk [...]



Kagurazaka Festival

Jul 22nd, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Festivals, Tokyo and Vicinity

In the center of the Tokyo’s Yamanote line you will find Kagurazaka Slope, an area that was once just beyond the walls of the imperial palace grounds, and where artists, politicians and Geisha once mingled. The name Kagurazaka is a combination of kagura (a shrine-dance to music) and saka (hill) and evokes the sites and [...]



An Evening Amongst Geisha

Jul 20th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events, Tokyo and Vicinity

The arts of the Geisha are not often witnessed by foreigners or even the ordinary Japanese, so I was told by my host Takehara-san.  The six Geisha districts of Tokyo, Shinbashi, Akasaka, Asakusa, Kagurazaka, Mukoujima and Yoshicho, have teamed up with Muromachi Fukutokujuku to present performances that are a great way to “feel”  Japanese culture [...]



Aomori Nebuta Festival

Jul 16th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Featured Articles, Festivals

In early August, Aomori Prefecture in the Tohoku region of Japan hosts the Nebuta & Neputa Festivals, where giant illuminated floats featuring famous warriors and and kabuki actors are paraded through the streets. Accompanied but the thundering sound of beating drums, the music of bamboo flutes and shouts of “rasseera” by Haneto dancers this is [...]



Tsukiji – The Morning Market

Jul 15th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events

There is more to Tsukiji in the morning that just the tuna auction.  In fact a stroll through the streets outside the market can be as invigorating experience as the market itself.  This is one early morning jaunt that I would recommend – while it is still a place of business, consumers are welcome to [...]



Horse Racing Samurai Style

Jul 10th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events

Samurai on horseback, parading through town and competing in contests with a history that dates back more than 1000 years.  That’s what you will witness if you attend the three day Soma Noma-oi Festival in Fukushima prefecture later this month.  A Japan National Intangible Folk Cultural Asset, this event features a parade of 500 armored [...]