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Goin’ Japanesque!

11 Events + Items that Remind Japanese of Summer

Summer is coming! As such, we’ve created a page of summer highlights in Japan. We’ve previously written about festivals so take a look at that with this. Which of these do you want to experience the most? :)

 

1. Watermelon Splitting

スイカ割り

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A classic summer activity down on the beach. You cover your eyes and split open a watermelon. Kids love it

suikawari2
Recently, Japan’s made these unique square-shaped watermelons lol

 

2. Radio Calisthenics

ラジオ体操

radio-calisthenics
Radio calisthenics are done as a regional event. Elementary schoolers from the neighborhood get up at 6am and do them together. You get a stamp if you come to every meeting. Such memories…

 

3. Wind Chimes

風鈴

wind-chime
Japanese use the sound of wind chimes to feel cooler. They’re nice even as a decorative item

 

4. Hanabi (Fireworks)

花火

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Am I the only one who heard a “BANG”?

Senko Hanabi

線香花火

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These look like fireworks up-close. But they’re my own sparklers. They go out if the fireball falls so my friends and I would have competitions when I was young for who could keep theirs the longest. They’re quiet, unlike the bigger fireworks, and are nice for their sense of elegance.

 

5. Stalls

屋台

japanese-festival1
You’re sure to see stalls at festivals selling food that’s cheaper than convenience store food and tastes better too! You gotta experience walking from end to end, eating all the food, when you go to a festival!

There’s a variety of stalls ↓

Fish Scooping

金魚すくい

japanese-festival2
This is a game where you catch goldfish with a net made of thin paper without breaking the paper.
Here’s an article on goldfish: Impressive! 2 Different Goldfish Art: Which Do You Like?

Masks

お面

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Target Practice

射的

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In this game a cork flies out of the gun and you get whatever falls down.

Candy Apples

りんご飴

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Chocolate Bananas

チョコバナナ

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Takoyaki

たこ焼き

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I can’t describe how tasty these are. They’re best freshly made!
Here’s an article on Takoyaki: Takoyakis for your empty stomach!

Okonomiyaki

お好み焼き

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An okonomiyaki worker’s pro technique.

 

6. Koshien Baseball Tournament

甲子園

koshien
The Koshien baseball tournament might be even more popular than pro baseball. One highlight is that you can feel the youthfulness of the high school baseball players.
Here’s an article on Baseball: -Breaking News- Ever heard of “Carp Girls”?: Foreseeing a Major Boom in Japan!

 

7. Firefly

firefly
Here’s an article on Firefly Festival: Kamakura (Temple/Shrine) Edition: Snag these 7 Sightseeing Hints and Double your Travel Enjoyment!

 

8. Toro nagashi

灯篭流し

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Here’s an article on Toro Nagashi: The Asakusa Summer Night Festival: Floating Lanterns Carrying People’s Sentiments are So Lovely

 

9. Star Festival

七夕祭

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Every year on 7/7 we wrap wishes written on a strip of paper around bamboo and pray. Colorful and very pretty
Here’s an article on Star Festival: Part 1: Get Your Yukata ON! Summer Mode ON! And Head Off To The Tanabata Festival!

 

10. Ochugen Gifts

お中元

ochugen
These are summer gifts you give to people who have given you help.
Here’s an article on Ochugen: 5+3+1 Check This Out If You Want to Live in Japan!: Strange Customs + Helpful Tips + Warning

 

11. 24h TV

24hTV
24h TV is played every year at the end of August. It’s a continuous live 24-hour program. One celebrity is picked as a runner for the 24h marathon, where they run nearly 100km.

It’s also the start of a fundraising campaign held all across Japan. You can see collection boxes everywhere, including convenience stores. The money they collect goes to people with disabilities and facilities.

When adults watch this show, they feel that summer is coming to a close while for children it’s the end of summer break.

Related: 7 Japanese Foods Associated with the Coming of Summer + 11 Helpful Tips

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