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Friday, Oct. 28, 2011
Halloween parades across Japan
By MONICA TANDUNG
It's nearing the end of October, which means one thing — Yes, Halloween! That spooky time of year when both children and adults in the West traditionally celebrate with costumes and fun. In Japan, Halloween festivities have become more popular over the years and many establishments around the country are getting ready for Halloween events and parties.
The annual Kawasaki Halloween Parade in Kanagawa Prefecture is the largest parade in Japan. This year, around 3,500 people will participate, which is some 500 more than last year. Registration to take part in the parade has already closed, but you can still enjoy watching it as well as get the chance to win prizes by going in costume.
Recently, this event has been busy and ir gets quite crowded, but it's still lots of fun and full of the Halloween spirit. Monsters, witches and vampires take to the streets, and with a variety of other inventive costumes who knows what other creatures or beings will join them.
A variety of other Halloween events will also take place in the area after the parade, including costume contests and a Halloween film festival, presenting the musical classic "The Rocky Horror Show."
The Kawasaki Halloween Parade will take place on Sun., Oct. 30 at Kawasaki's La Cittadella and Kawasaki City Hall Plaza.
Nearby Kawasaki in Yokohama is another parade, the Yamate Seiyoukan Halloween Walk 2011, also on Oct., 30. This time, participants are invited to collect stamps around the area and win prizes. This event includes face painting, an open café, Halloween workshops, and of course lots of candy.
For those in central Tokyo, there will also be a Halloween parade at Tokyo's Roppongi Hills Arena from 11a.m to 1.30 p.m. on Oct., 29. It's open to visitors of all ages, and gifts and candies will be handed out to those who come in costumes.
Fukuoka Prefecture's Hakata district will hold its Canal Halloween parade from 1 p.m. on Oct. 30. Participants will walk from Hakata Riverain to Canal City Hakata, and a costume contest will take place on the same day at JR Hakata City from 4 p.m.
Kyoto, too, will be celebrating with its Kitayama Halloween event. With pumpkin carving, music events, masquerades and costume parties, it's a full day of Halloween fun that includes a Halloween Food Village, with stands selling themed goods and sweets.
And for those in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, a variety of Halloween events will take place at Rokko Island on Oct. 29 and 30. This will include Halloween parades, costume contests and workshops for carving Halloween pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns. A haunted house is also waiting for you to explore.
These are just a few of the numerous events taking place across Japan, so there's no reason not to get out and have some supernatural fun. Don't be afraid to join in the festivities.
For more information Kawasaki Halloween Parade: www.lacittadella.co.jp/halloween Yamate Seiyoukan Halloween Walk 2011: www2.yamate-seiyoukan.org/halloween/2011 Roppongi Hills Arena Halloween Parade: (03) 6406-6000 Canal Halloween: www.canalcity.co.jp/canalhalloween2011 Kitayama Halloween: www.kitayama-halloween.com Rokko Island: www.rokko-island.com. special/halloween2011. (All websites are in Japanese only.)