If you’re going to be in the Melbourne CBD this weekend, then swing past Federation Square on Sunday 28th of February for the annual Japanese Summer Festival. It’s always a fun day out with entertainment, special guests, food, drink and cosplay as far as the eye can see!! It runs from 12PM – 6PM and there are usually fantastic raffle prizes as well. If you want more info, then check out the official Facebook page.
A couple of weeks ago saw the return of the annual Melbourne Japanese Summer Festival at Docklands with public numbers swelling on a fantastic Summer day. The following description of the event is from the Facebook page which you can check out for the fun had on the day.
The Summer Festival or “natsu matsuri” is an annual event throughout Japan and comes to life this February in Melbourne at the Docklands. Since its inception in 2010, the festival has grown enormously, doubling its attendance to reach 10,000 people in summer 2011. Traditionally held honour one’s ancestors, the festival features the “bon odori”, a dance performed in a circle whilst wearing cotton kimono known as yukata. At the Melbourne festival, all visitors are encouraged to learn and join in the dance. In addition, the festival will showcase a number of performances, including Taiko Drumming, Shamisen and Sumo! The festival will also be packed with a wide range of stalls with traditional Japanese games, activities and foods – including the favourites sushi, okonomiyaki and bento. Another big attraction of the day will be the chance to win one of the fantastic raffle prizes, including the major prize of two return economy-class tickets to Japan, courtesy of Singapore Airlines. The festival provides an excellent opportunity to strengthen the ties between Melbourne and Japan and share in rich Japanese cultural traditions with the Melbourne community.
You can also check out the website for more info as well as see the gallery below full of great pictures taken by Matt, you can catch him on YouTube here, or his Flickr feed. Thanks for the use of the pictures!
This past Saturday in Melbourne, 11th February, saw a bit of Japanese culture come to town in the form of the annual Japanese Summer Festival held at the Docklands. It was a great day with very sunny weather and crowds that only got larger as the day progressed.
Beginning at 4PM and stretching through til 8PM with a raffle draw that last an hour, there was heaps to eat and see with Japanese arts and culture on display and for sale at various stalls set up around the edges, there was also local Japanese import magazine shop, Kanga Kanga (@KangaKangaMelb), which was drawing a great crowd with some people seeing Japanese magazines for the first time.
There were a couple of Taiko drum exhibitions which the crowd really got into as well as a Sumo demonstration or two which was a bit tricky to see due to the huge crowd and the arena not being elevated. Still, what was seen was very impressive and gave people an idea that there is quite some skill involved in this national sport.
The food stalls had a great variety but the queues to get some nom noms were massively long in most cases, still they seemed to move along at a reasonable pace. There was also a beer area for the over 18’s where there was the usual suspects of Asahi, Kirin and some other plum alcoholic beverage.
All in all, a good day out, even if the crowds were a tad large for the area, maybe a larger venue can be looked at for next year. The main stage MC confirmed that the festival would go ahead next year so if anyone reads this and they’re an organiser, please choose a larger venue!! 🙂 So I managed to get some snaps which you can check out below, hope they manage to convey how large the crowd was and what a good day was had the people.
Tomorrow, the 11th February, will see Melbourne host the annual Japanese Summer Festival at Docklands. The event will take place between 4PM – 8PM with loads to see, heaps to eat and great prizes to be won, with the top prize being a return trip for two to Japan! Tickets are only $2 which is an absolute steal. Prizes range from vouchers to hotel vouchers and heaps more.
There will be Taiko drums and sumo exhibitions and more throughout the day so everyone should come down, it promises to be a fantastic day for all! For more info, check the link below or refer to the map.
Needless to say we will be there taking pics which we’ll be sharing later on so check back for that.
UPDATE: PICS WILL BE UP SOON, JUST SORTING THEM ALL OUT 🙂
NEW UPDATE: PICS AND RECAP ARE UP AND POSTED, CHECK OUT THE ARTICLE BY CLICKING HERE!