The Lucky Island July 2018 Event Roundup

Summer is officially here. Despite the heat and humidity, summer in Japan can be a magical time. From the star festival of Tanabata to delicious Fukushima peaches coming into season to festivals every weekend, this is Japan at its best. Don your jinbei and yukata, eat that Blue Hawaiian shaved ice and make the most of the festival atmosphere! After all, the best way to beat  the summer heat is to have so much fun you forget about it! 

Also– keep your eyes peeled for a second list of summer events dedicated solely to the many fireworks events around our beautiful lucky island, Fukushima!

This list, and all following event lists, will continuously be updated weekly throughout the month on Wednesdays until the month turns over to a new roundup. This list isn’t inclusive of all events, so please, feel free to contact the editors at newseditor@fujet.org if you have events you’d like to be included here.  

Without further ado, your July 2018 events!

Week One: July 1st to 8th
Week Two: July 9th to 16th
Week Three: July 17th to 22nd
Week Four and Beyond: July 23rd to 31st

Week One: July 1st to 8th


Ouchi-Juku Half Summer Festival

Ouchi-Juku Half Summer Festival

Date: July 2nd

When and Where: Ouchi-Juku, Shimogo Town; 国選定重要伝統的建造物群『大内宿』

Time: Daylight Hours

Cost: free, parking lot of 300 cars has small fee

How to get there:

  • By Train: Get off at Yunokami Onsen station; it’s a 15 minute taxi ride from there

Travel back in time to the Edo period at the historic post town of Ouchi-juku. Priests, shrine maidens, and locals make a pilgrimage to the shrine to pray for a good harvest. While you’re there, try your hand at eating soba using only a green onion!

Contact No: 0241-68-3611

Website: https://aizumonogatari.com/event/165.html

Available in: Japanese

 

Odaka Volunteer Day July 2018

Odaka Volunteering Day July

Date: July 7th

When and Where: Odaka Station in Minamisoma

Time: 8:30 – 16:30

It’s suggested that you do the following things:

  • Bring a packed lunch (there are a microwave and hot water at the Volunteer Center available for use)
  • Wear long-sleeved work clothes and gloves that you don’t mind getting dirty; for those with larger hands and feet, I’d suggest bring your own gloves and shoes if possible, though the center has work boots available and may have your size
  • Bring items for an onsen if you’d like to enjoy the discounted onsen after your hard work!

Additional information available on the event page.

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/196280637760799/

 

Fukushima Prefectural Art Museum Exhibit

Illustrator: Mizumaru Anzai Exhibition

Date: July 7th to September 2nd

When and Where: Fukushima Prefectural Art Museum 〒960-8003
福島市森合字西養山1番地

Time: 12:00 (opening ceremony) to 14:30

Cost: 1,000 yen

How to get there:

  • Please see the Facebook event page for details.

Anzai Mizumaru has been active in various fields such as novels, manga, picture books, essays and advertisements since the 1970s. Enjoy an exhibition of his various, colourful works from a variety of mediums.

Website: https://art-museum.fcs.ed.jp/%E5%B1%95%E7%A4%BA/%E4%BC%81%E7%94%BB%E5%B1%95

Available in: Japanese

 

Bookushima July 2018 Meeting: Pachinko

Bookushima Book Club July Meeting: Pachinko

Date: July 8th

When and Where: Koriyama (Please see Facebook event page for more details)

Time: 12:00 (opening ceremony) to 14:30

Cost: Food for the potluck lunch!

How to get there:

  • Please see the Facebook event page for details.

July’s book will be “Pachinko” by Min Jin Lee. There will be a pot luck lunch and Followed by a discussion of the book. The time of the event is an estimate, and depending on discussions the event may run longer. 

The next book selection will be decided at the meeting so be sure to bring your ideas!

Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/1066671390156949/

Available in: English

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Week Two: July 9th to 16th


Isasumi Shrine Rice Planting Fesitval

Isasumi Shrine Rice Planting Festival

Date: July 12th

When and Where: Aizu Misato Town

  • 〒969-6263 福島県大沼郡会津美里町宮林甲4377

Time: unlisted

Cost: Free

How to get there:

  • By Train: Get off at Aizu Takada Station (Aizu Line) from there it is a 25 minute walk by foot

This rice planting festival occurs every July. Children dressed as lion cubs scare away the animals who might damage the rice fields, and everyone prays for good harvest. Locals also carry mikoshi in a parade.

Website: http://isasumi.or.jp/otaue.html

Available in: Japanese

 

Beautiful Blades Exhibition at the Fukushima Prefectural Museum

Beautiful Blads Exhibition at the Fukushima Prefectural Museum

Date: July 13th to August 19th

When and Where: Fukushima Prefectural Museum, Aizu Wakamatsu

  • 福島県立博物館 〒965-0807 福島県会津若松市城東町1-25

Time: 

Cost: Free

How to get there:

  • Approximately 3 km from JR Aizuwakamatsu Station
    • About 10 minutes by taxi
    • By Aizu tour bus “Hikarasan”, get off at Sannaru Entrance, About 30 minutes by the busy bus “Akabe”, get off at Sannomaru immediately

View 19 exemplary blades from the Heian & Kamakura Periods through the
Edo Period on loan from the Tokyo Fuji Art Museum, as well as swords, sword
fittings and armor relating to Fukushima from museums within the prefecture.
*On Saturday, July 21 and Sunday, July 29 from 1:30pm, you can try on armor
as part of a special hands-on exhibit.

Website: http://www.general-museum.fks.ed.jp/01_exhibit/kikakuten/2018/180713_yaiba/180713_yaiba.html

Available in: Japanese

Little Trip Around the World: USA (Texas)
Edition

Date: July 12th

When and Where: Aizu Wakamatsu, Aizu Wakamatsu, Aizu Keikodo Floor 3 Room 7

  • 会津若松市生涯学習総合センター【會津稽古堂】

Time: 18:30-20:00

Cost: Free

How to get there:

  • By Train: Get off at Nishi Aizu Wakamatsu Station  from there it is a 25 minute walk by foot

Ms. Araceli Martinez, a fourth-year student at the University of North Texas and month-long intern at the Aizu Wakamatsu International Ladies Association, will give a talk on her hometown of Dallas, Texas a well as introduce Tex-Mex food and culture.

Website: http://awia.jp/en/information/index.html

Available in: Japanese, English, Chinese

 

FuJET Mt. Fuji Climb

FuJET Mt. Fuji Climb

Date: July 14th to 15th

When and Where: UNESCO World Heritage Site Mt. Fuji

Time: Saturday 9:30-Sunday 20:30

Cost: various, variable based on number of attendees

How to get there:

  • There will be pick-ups at Fukushima, Koriyama, and Iwaki Stations

An ancient Japanese saying claims that you are a fool if you never climb Mount Fuji, but you are twice the fool if you climb it more than once. Come be foolish with your fellow FuJETs and climb up Japan’s most iconic mountain, where you will reach the peak just in time to see the sun rise over the land of the rising sun.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/1939165893009870/

Avaliable in: English

Traditional Swordsmithing, Minka-en @ Night

Date: July 14th

When and Where: Fukushima City, Minka-en

Time: 17:00-20:00

Cost: Free

How to get there:

  • Bus: 630 yen
    28 min (+10 min walk)
    Route: 82-1 Sabara keiyu Shiki no Sato (佐原経由四季の里)
    Note: Weekends and public holidays only.
    From: East Exit Bus Stop No. 7
    To: Muroishi (室石)
    Departs: 8:15, 9:45, 11:00, 12:40, 14:10
    Return: (via Route 1-1): 8:08, 10:39, 11:59, 13:34, 15:09, 16,34, 17:15, 18:43

A special night version of this monthly event! Enjoy a festival-like atmosphere while learning about Shaping (仕上げ), Cleaning (土取り),  and Tempering (焼入れ).

Website: https://fukushima-guide.jp/experience/traditional-swordsmithing/

Available in: English

Kitakata Retro Sidestreet Festival

Kitakata Retro Sidestreet Festival

Date: July 14th to 15th

When and Where: Kitakata 

  • 〒966-0827 福島県喜多方市字沢ノ免7331 会津喜多方商工会議所

Time: Saturday Noon-21:30, Sunday 9:00-16:00

Cost: Free; classes may have a cost; touring the caves begins at 1200 for a general ticket plus 200 if you choose the exploration course

How to get there:

  • In the Fureai Street Shopping area, 5 minutes by car from Kitakata Station

Retro cars, tunes, fashion, and more. Stroll along Kitakata’s famous kura (traditional Japanese storehouses) and enjoy the atmosphere of Japan in the 50’s and 60’s with  festival stalls, games, music, food and everything retro. Beautiful paper decorations will line the streets and you can enjoy outdoor dining and music until late on Saturday evening. Why not take a trip back in time at the Kitakata Retro Sidestreet Festival?

Website: http://www.aizukitakatacci.or.jp/special/retoro

Available in: Japanese

 

 

The First East Japan Surfing Games

The First East Japan Surfing Games

Date: July 15th to 16th

When and Where: Iwaki, Usuio Beach 

  • 四倉海水浴場

Time: From 5:30 AM

Cost: Free; Fees apply to join competition

How to get there:

  • Usuiso Beach 薄磯海水浴場
    • <Car> About 25 km from Iwaki central IC, then about 40 minutes
    • <Train / bus> Get off at JR Joban Line Iwaki station Get off at Ebina via Onamehama bus , get off at the “Lighthouse entrance” Bus stop, from there just a short walk

Watch surfers from every age and level try and masteer the ocean waves at the first ever East Japan Surfing Games. Guaranteed to be totally gnarly dude.

Website: http://www.nsa-surf.org/match/2018fsacup/

Available in: Japanese

 

Iwaki City Beach Opening Ceremony

Iwaki City Beach Opening Ceremony

Date: July 14th

When and Where: Iwaki, Various Beaches

  • 四倉海水浴場

Time: 9:00 – 16:00

Cost: Free, some parking fees may apply

How to Get There:

Usuiso Beach 薄磯海水浴場

  • <Car> About 25 km from Iwaki central IC, then about 40 minutes
  • <Train / bus> Get off at JR Joban Line Iwaki station Get off at Ebina via Onamehama bus , get off at the “Lighthouse entrance” Bus stop, from there just a short walk

Nakoso Beach 勿来海水浴場

  • <Car> Joban expressway Iwaki Nakoso IC, then about 10 minutes
  •  <Train / Bus> About 20 minutes on foot from Nakoso Station on the JR Joban Line

Yokosuka Beach 四倉海水浴場

  • <Car> About 8 km from Joban Expressway Iwaki Shikura IC, then about 10 minutes
  • <Train / Bus> About 20 minutes on foot from Shizukura Station on the Joban Line

The official opening ceremony of three of Iwaki’s beautiful and sandy beaches, the event celebrates nature, fun in the sun, and the recovery of the Fukushima coast after March 11, 2011. 

Website: http://kankou-iwaki.or.jp/news/79443

Available in: Japanese

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Week Three: July 17th to 22nd 


Tobito Stargazing Event

Tobito Stargazing Event

Date: July 20th

When and Where: Tabiuto Town, Iwaki

  • 田人おふくろの宿

Time: 19:00-21:00

Cost: 300 yen

How to get there:

  • 1 hour by car from Iwaki city hall

Looking to enjoy the starry skies surround by nature? Join the Iwaki Astronomy Club and turn your gaze up to the sky!

 

Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/187108922128108/

Avaliable in: Japanese, English

 

FuJET Leaver’s Party 2018

FuJET Leaver’s Party 2018

Date: July 21st

When and Where: Funatsu Park,
船津公園キャンプ場

Time: 11:00-21:00

Cost: Free

 

Friends, Food, and Sun! (touch wood!) Join us along the shores of beautiful Lake Inawashiro for a party to say goodbye to all of our wonderful friends we’ve met here in Fukushima to wish them the best on the next leg of their journey!

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/191530124834180/

Mountain Hike and Stress Management Seminar

 

Mountain Hike and Stress Management Seminar

Date: July 21st

When and Where: Meet at Iwaki City Hall and bus together to the mountain venue, Tabito Ofukuro Lodge

Time: 7:40-16:00

Cost: 2,000 yen

 

A morning hike surrounded by nature, lunch and then an afternoon lecture on stress management by Ms. Ko Ukawa, Associated Professor of Taisho University.

Facebook Eventhttps://www.facebook.com/events/258049674744764/

 

BeerFes Fukushima 2018

BeerFes Fukushima 2018

Date: July 20th to 22nd

When and Where:  Fukushima City

  • 福島市 街なか広場
    福島市本町1

Time:

  • [2oth] 15: 00-20:00
  • [21st] 10: 00-20:00
  • [22nd] 10:00-19: 00

Cost: 500 yen for domestic beer, 600 yen for imported

With help from brewers from all over the country, food vendors, and lots of local support– this event invites you to enjoy the charm points of Fukushima city and the summer season while enjoying a cold beer, good music, and even better company.

Websitehttp://www.beerfes-f.com/category/outline

Available in: Japanese

Aizu Tajima Gion Festival

Aizu Tajima Gion Festival

Date: July 22nd to 24th

When and Where:  Aizu Tajima Town

  • 〒967-0004 福島県南会津郡南会津町田島字後原甲3531番地1

Time:

  • [22nd] 12: 00-22: 30
  • [23rd] 7: 00-22: 30
  • [24th] 13: 00-15: 00

Cost: Free

An 800-year old festival and a cultural treasure of Japan. Locals dress up in traditional bridal attire and make a pilgrimage to through the Tajima streets to a local shrine. On the 22nd, offering will be made at the local shrine during the day, in th evening, floats will be pulled around town with children’s kabuki performaces take place on board. The 23rd, the most famous of the festivals takes place– a bridal procession where over 40 women dressed in traditional bridal kimono make their way through the early morning streets of Tajima town to offer prayer at the local shrine. 

Website: http://www.minamiaizu.org/gion/index.html

Available in: Japanese

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Week Four and Beyond: July 23rd to 31st

Onahama Sea Festival

Onahama Sea Festival

Date: July 28th to 29th

When and Where: Iwaki Aquamarine Park

  • いわき花火大会実行委員会
    〒971-8101 福島県いわき市小名浜本町11-1 まちづくりステーション小名浜内

Time: 10:00-16:00

Cost: Varies; entrance is free

How to get there:

  • ●When using a bus
    Approximately 40 minutes from JR Iwaki Station (To Onahama garage)
    Approximately 20 minutes from JR Izumi station (go to Iwaki station via Eji)

Celebrate the influence of the sea on the culture and people and town of Onahama in Iwaki. Held at Onahama Port No.1 / 2 Pier (Aquqmarine Park), events and activities include stage shows, banana boat rides, aqua walkers, and a jet ski show.

Website: http://www.iwakihanabi.com/onahama_kaiyusai.html

Available in: Japanese, English

 

Summer Festa in Koriyama 2018

Summer Festa in Koriyama 2018

Date: July 25th to 29th

When and Where:  Kaiseizan Park, Koriyama City

  • 郡山市開成1丁目5

Time:

  • 25th to  27th 17:00-21:00
  • 28th to 29th 14:00-21:00

Cost: 2,000 yen in advance/2,500 at the event

Enjoy beer, food, fireworks, an authentic German band right in Koriyama’s own Kaiseizan Park. Entry price includes a set of tickets that can be exchanged for beer and food at the stalls inside of the event. Are you ready to get your Oom-pah on? 

Websitehttps://www.ko-cci.or.jp/event/maturi/summer.html

Available in: Japanese

 

 

Soma Nomaoi Festival

Soma Nomaoi Festival

Date: July 28th to 30th

When and Where: Minamisoma City

  • 972-8326 福島県いわき市常磐藤原町手這50-1

Time: You can visit the exhibition from 9:00 – 17:00. The last entrance occurs at 16:30, so make sure to arrive early enough to get in if you visit in the afternoon.

Cost: 1,000 yen entry fee to races

How to get there:

  • 15 minute shuttle bus ride from Haranomachi station

The Soma Nomaoi is a unique festival that can only be seen in the beautiful seaside city of Minamisoma. This horse-themed festival takes place over the horse of three days. The first day, ceremonial opening prayers are made at various local shrines and pre-main event races. The second day of the event includes a parade of mounted samurai through the Minamisoma streets starting at 9:30. The horse races on the 100m track start at noon. After the races, the mounted horsement take place in a unique game of capture the flag. There is a single event on the third day, the Nomakade, where horse are caught barehanded by young local men.

Website: http://soma-nomaoi.jp/ https://www.kyuhoshi.com/2017/06/04/soma-nomaoi/ https://rediscoverfukushima.com/2018/06/13/soma-nomaoi-2018-festival-guide/

Available in: Japanese, English

 

Iwaki Nebuta

Ichikura Nebuta 

Date: July 28th

When and Where: Iwaki, 四倉築港~JR四ッ倉駅前

Time: 9:00 am sharp

Cost: Free

Watch giant Nebuta (illuminated floats) and dancers go through the streets of Iwaki in this exciting and unique summer festival!

Shirakura Nebuta and Iwaki Nebuta Evening
Tentative Schedule–

Place: Road Station Yotskura Port Lawn Square (Opening Ceremony)
Course: Shichira-cho, Naka-cho → Honmachi → Yotsuzu Warehouse station
18: 00 ~ Opening ceremony
18: 30 ~ Dancers depart
19: 00 ~ Nebuta depart
21 : 00 Arrival at Yotsukura station 

Website: http://kankou-iwaki.or.jp/honyaku/festival/572.html

Available In: English 

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