Aug 6, 2014

Neputa lantern lift apparatus kills festival participant

A man in his 40s who was participating in the Hirosaki Neputa Matsuri Festival in Hirosaki, Aomori Prefecture, was found apparently crushed to death Tuesday evening while getting a huge Neputa lantern ready for the parade, it was reported. The man was from the ...

Belgian beer, food and music

Jul 2, 2014

Belgian beer, food and music

by Sei Dickinson

Who doesn’t enjoy a frosty cold beer in the hot weather? This weekend you can drink to your heart’s content, while enjoying a little culture at the Belgian Beer Weekend in Yamashita Park. You may be surprised to hear that Belgium has more than ...

Battle it out in Shinshiro

Jul 2, 2014

Battle it out in Shinshiro

by Akira Okubo

During the Sengoku period (1482-1573), the Takeda family was one of the strongest clans in Japan, known in particular for its successful cavalry charges. Yet in 1575, it found itself up against something that rendered it powerless — the new western technology of firearms. ...

Light up the night with a firefly festival

Jun 5, 2014

Light up the night with a firefly festival

by Sang Woo Kim

Fireflies, known as hotaru in Japan, have inspired numerous artists and writers, including Haruki Murakami, whose short story “Firefly” was later adapted into the first part of his best-seller “Norwegian Wood.” In the real world, however, fireflies are sadly in decline, as their natural ...

Tokyo's bleep on the synthesizer fan's radar

Jun 5, 2014

Tokyo's bleep on the synthesizer fan's radar

by Florian Turgeon

Making electronic music can be incredibly intimidating for beginners: What’s the best hardware to buy? How do you use it? And all those cables! To give budding musicians a little guidance, this weekend’s Tokyo Festival of Modular at SuperDeluxe in Roppongi offers an opportunity ...

Swap carps for pinatas on Children's Day

May 1, 2014

Swap carps for pinatas on Children's Day

by Sang Woo Kim

Children’s Day in Japan is known for its koinobori (carp streamer) decorations, but perhaps this year you’d like to celebrate with a pinata instead. The annual Latin American festival Cinco de Mayo occurs on May 5, the same day as Children’s Day. This year, ...

Celebrate Ooka in Chigasaki

Apr 17, 2014

Celebrate Ooka in Chigasaki

by Magdalena Osumi

Stories of Ooka Tadasuke (1677-1751) have been passed down through generations. He was also known as Ooka Echizen, the governor of the province of Echizen, which was located in present-day Fukui Prefecture. At that time, he served under the eighth Tokugawa shogun, Yoshimune. A ...