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Posts tagged kawasaki

Halloween in Japan

LA CITTADELLA Japan halloween costume bumble bees kawasaki parade

Japanese bumble bee Halloween costumes @ the annual parade in Kawasaki

If you happen to be in Japan for Halloween this year (or any year), and you are in or near Tokyo, you may want to check out the festivities in Kawasaki just south of Tokyo. Here is a schedule of this year’s events (most happening on the Saturday night and Sunday before Halloween). There isn’t much besides decorations outside of these events in Kawasaki with regard to Halloween in Japan. No trick or treating and the costume parties are few and far between.

Kawasaki Halloween Parade

2009 Kawasaki, Japan Halloween Parade float

Kawasaki is doing their annual Halloween festivities again this year. The spots for parade participants has been filled for a while now (only the first 3,500 to sign up can participate), but you can still go watch. Since Halloween isn’t a holiday in Japan, the parade will take place during the afternoon of October 30.

Handmade udon

udon うどん

The sign on the window says the udon (うどん) is made by hand. If you don’t believe the sign you need only to peer through the glass for proof.

I took this photo in the giant, underground, shopping complex sort of attached to the Kawasaki Station.

Tuna head

イトーヨーカドー

Not the greatest picture in the world today, but it has a story to go along with it. I sort of sneaked the shot, as many stores don’t like pictures being taken inside. I don’t know if this store had that policy or not.

Anyway, I was on my way to see Outrage in Kawasaki, and I had a few hours to kill. Having once lived near the Mizonokuchi Station, I decided to visit the place for the first time in nearly 22 years. I checked out the old Itoyokado, which is in a new, much larger building than before. The grocery part of the store (my memory tells me that it used to only be groceries) is now in the basement, and it is huge–probably the largest grocery store I’ve seen in Japan, other than those on U.S. military bases. By American standards it would merely be large but anyway…

The cool thing about this store is they slice up a giant bluefin tuna right in front of the customers while explaining about all of the different pieces. The maguro (鮪 or まぐろ) parts are then auctioned off right on the spot. I say auction but the prices were fixed. The first customer to claim a piece by shouting out was able to purchase it so it felt like an auction. Each part went for 1,000 yen. Freshly cut maguro was being sold left and right. They were saving the head, pictured, for last.

In front of the head you can see Itoyokado was having a special on eel (うなぎ). Until Children’s Day (こどもの日) the price was only 880 yen. Note the koinobori on the sign.

Halloween Festival in Japan – Part 3

japanese witch costume kawasaki halloween parade

Some more scenes from the Kawasaki Halloween Parade 2009 today…

Halloween at Baskin Robbins in Japan

Actually, this second pic is not from the parade. Instead it shows how Halloween fever has taken hold of an ordinary Baskin-Robbins ice cream store. Everything goes Halloween in the store and the Japanese come in to buy more than normal.

Japanese girl in pumpkin costume kawasaki halloween parade 2009

blue people japan cosplay halloween

Kawasaki Halloween Parade 2009 – Part 2

little japanese girl witch flies through crowd at kawasaki halloween parade

The little, Japanese girl on the right, dressed as a witch, looked to be taking off when the wind caught her cape.

Mr. and Mrs. Freddy Krueger costume kawasaki halloween parade japan

Ms. Krueger tried to take off my son’s face.

up float parade pixar halloween japan

The “Up” movie float started the parade. There were two large nets of balloons coming off the top before the parade began. One they let go to kick off the parade. The other had to be pulled in tight so they could get by trees, etc.

reverse trick-or-treat in japan japanese kids

These two, cute kids were doing some reverse trick-or-treating. They handed us candy and said “Happy Halloween” although it sounded more like ハッピーハロウィン. In any event, it brought a smile to my face.

What I eventually figured out, though, is that photos only come out well (with my camera anyway) pre- and post-parade when the subjects are still. During the parade video provides much better results.

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