CONTRIBUTED BY KACEY A.
Happy New Year everyone! Below you’ll find a list of local events. Events on the island are constantly being created and changed, so please make sure to use the contact info provided on each event to verify information. If you know of an additional event that you’d like to share with our readers, please add it to the comments below! Enjoy!
Celebrate the first sunrise of 2016. Nakagusuku Castle Ruins, 503 Oshiro Kitanakagusuku. ¥200-¥400. 5am. 098-935-5419
The annual first three days of a new year bullfighting. ¥2,500 Men, ¥2,000 Women. Nakijin Bullring, 792-1 Nakasone, Nakijin. 1pm.
January 1st – January 3rd
Feast of the New Year
Celebrate the reenactment of the Ryukyu Kingdom era New Year’s ritual. Listen to throne music being played. Events throughout the day. See website for schedule. Shuri Castle Tadashi 1-2 Shurikingo, Naha. ¥310 – ¥820 8:30am – 5pm.
Buffalo Riding Experience
Ride on the back of a buffalo. Must be 4 years old or older, and weigh less than 80 kg/176 lbs. Bios on the Hill, 961-30 Kadekari, Ishikawa, Uruma. ¥1,000 plus admission fee.
January 1st – January 11th
Hello Kitty Art Exhibition
Everything Hello Kitty! A must art exhibit that is only on display until January 11th. Tomiton 1st Floor, 1-411 Toyosaki, Tomigusuku. 11am – 6pm. ¥300 – ¥800. 080.8351.8071
January 1st – February 21st
Ryukyu Lantern Festival
The first ever lantern festival held at Ryukyu Mura. Variety of entertainment, classical and modern music, dancing, food stands and more. Murasaki Mura, 1020-1 Takashiho, Nakagami, Yomitan. 9am – 10pm daily. ¥400 – ¥600.
2016 Flag Kan Guidance
Flag demonstrations representing Village Gogan in the New Year. Nakagusuku Castle Ruins, 503 Oshiro Kitanakagusuku. ¥200-¥400. 098-895-9144. 11am.
The annual first three days of a new year bullfighting. ¥3,000 Men, ¥2,000 Women. Uruma Ishikawa Multipurpose Dome, 3302 Ishikawa, Uruma. 2pm.
The annual first three days of a new year bullfighting. ¥3,000 Men, ¥2,000 Women. Uruma Ishikawa Multipurpose Dome, 3302 Ishikawa, Uruma. 3pm.
Ryukyu Dragon Pro Wrestling
Navel Kadena Arena. 372-2 Kaneku, Kadena Town. Tickets between ¥1,000 and ¥2,500. 1:30pm Doors, 2pm Start. 098-956-5500
Ryukyu Kings vs. Shinshu Brave Warriors
Ginowan City Gym, Ginowan. Tickets vary from ¥900 to ¥4,000 per game. Season tickets available. Tickets can be purchased at Kadena ITT, MCCS Tours+, and box office. 5:30pm doors open, 7pm tip off.
Opening game of the season. Street basketball meets DJ’s & MC’s. Music Town Sound Market, 3F, 1-1-1 Ueshi, Okinawa City. Children ¥1,000 – Adults ¥2,500. Doors open 6pm, tip off 7pm. 098-926-4551
Performances by numerous artists. Okinawa Nakagusuku Castle Ruins, 503 Oshiro Kitanakagusuku. Performances start at 2pm. ¥3,000 plus one drink.
Exhibition of Ancient Civilization Photo
UFO crop circle, photo exhibition, alien costumes, comic books, dance performances. Carnival Park, American Village, Mihama. 4pm – 7pm. Free
January 9th – January 32st
The 8th sunflower festival held in Kitanakagusuku with over 10,000 square meters holding over 400,000 sunflowers. Shiosai Park, 2070-8 Atsuta, Kitanakagusuku. 10am – 4pm daily. Free Admission.
New Year Rock Festival
Music festival featuring JET, Freddie Eto, PRYZM, Civilian Skunk, Haebaru Bibappusu, and Kozasupapaji. Music Town Sound Market, 3F. Doors 3pm, Curtain 4pm. ¥2,500 – ¥3,000. 098-932-1949
La’ Muse Jazz Orchestra
15th anniversary concert. Music Town Sound Market, 3F, 1-1-1 Ueshi, Okinawa City. Doors 6:30pm, Curtain 7pm. ¥2,000 – ¥2,500. 090-7585-1292
Happy Marilyn Sunday
Handmade goods, workshops, massages, and food that the whole family can enjoy. Ginowan Marine Support Center, 7-10-27 Oyama, Ginowan. 098-942-2200
Live street performance by artists Civilian Skunk. Carnival Park, American Village, Mihama. 2pm – 7pm.
January 16th – 17th
Tokoiriya Ryoki Ballet will be performed inside of the Cave Cafe, 202 Maegawa, Tamagusuku, Nanjo. Doors 7pm, Curtain 7:30pm. ¥5000 – ¥7000. 098-948-4192
Ryukyu Kings vs. Bambitious Nara
Okinawa City Gym, Okinawa City. Tickets vary from ¥900 to ¥4,000 per game. Season tickets available. Tickets can be purchased at Kadena ITT, MCCS Tours+, and box office. 15:30pm doors open, 7pm tip off.
Health and Beauty of Aroma Fair
First ever health, beauty and aroma fair in Okinawa. Ginowan Convention Center, 4-3-1 Mashiki, Ginowan. 11am – 6pm. Free.
Parenting Support Fair
Bring the kids! Support for parents with children, trying to create a community. Sanei Ginowan Convention City. 558-10 Uchidomari, Ginowan.
Ryukyu Kings vs. Bambitious Nara
Okinawa City Gym, Okinawa City. Tickets vary from ¥900 to ¥4,000 per game. Season tickets available. Tickets can be purchased at Kadena ITT, MCCS Tours+, and box office. 12:30pm doors open, 2pm tip off.
January 20th – 21st
Onna Village Industrial Festival
Various local specialties including food, vegetables, pottery and glassware. Live music, dance and other performances. Onna Village Fureai, 5973 Kunigami, Onna. 10am – 4pm. Free
Pops and Street LIVE performance outside. Carnival Park, American Village, Mihama. 5pm – 7pm.
January 23rd – January 24th
Hundred Imperial Treasures Sun
A ritual even of the woman’s pilgrimage to Shuri Castle. Shuri Castle Tadashi 1-2 Shurikingo, Naha. ¥310 – ¥820. Two showings: 12pm – 1pm, 3pm – 4pm.
Okinawa City Industry Festival
Discover products made specifically in Okinawa City. Comprehensive Park, 5-3-1 Hiyagon, Okinawa City. 10am – 6pm. Free
January 23rd – February 7th
Mount Yae Cherry Blossom Festival
Approximately 7,000 cherry trees like the 3km mountain road. Mount Yae Sakura-no-Mori Park. Free Admission.
Nakijin Gusuku Cherry Blossom Festival
Cherry Blossoms and night lightings. Sitting 100 meters above sea level, the path leading to the castle will be lit with candles. Traditional Okinawan entertainment. Nakijin Castle Ruins, 5101 Imadomari, Nakijin Village. 8am – 9pm, night lighting 6pm – 9pm). ¥300 – ¥400
Minchu Handmade City
Fair of miscellaneous goods, accessories, fabric, woodworking, plants, etc. Tomigusuku Citizen Gymnasium, 5-2 Toyosaki, Tomigusuku. 11am – 3pm
January 30th – 31st
Nago Cherry Blossom Festival
2km walk through nago Castle Ruins lined with 25,000 cherry trees. Nago Central Park & city’s downtown area. 11am – 9pm. Free Admission.
January 30th – February 7th
Okinawa International Orchid Show
30th edition for the Ocean Expo Park orchid show. Over 30,000 orchids, events, workshops, and music performances.
Umaharashii Ryukyu Horse Racing
A traditional and rare horse race featuring only and handful of horses that can master the specific style of running. Okinawa Zoo, 5-7-1 Goya, Okinawa City.
Zakimi Castle Ruins: 708-4 Zakimi, Yomitan. Daily 6pm – 9pm. Free. Weather dependant.
Stardust Fantasia: Kanucha Resort, 156-2 Abe, Nago. Daily 6pm. ¥3,000 at event, ¥2000 in advance.
Mihama American Village Illumination: American Village, Mihama. Free Daily 6pm – Midnight. Until January 30th.
Itoman Tourist Farm: 1018 Mabuni, Itoman. Laser show on December 21st & 24th. Illuminations from January 1st – January 3rd. 6pm – 10pm. 098-840-8135
Ashibi Winter Elegance: Ashibina Outlet Mall, 1-188 Toyosaki, Tomigusuku. Free. Illuminations until February 14th. Snowfall at 5pm, 6pm, 7pm, 8pm. Illumination show at 6pm, 7pm, 8pm. Daily. 098-891-6000
Tonan Night Decoration: Southeast Botanical Gardens. Illuminations until February 14th. 5pm – 10pm. Admission ¥1,000 – ¥1,800. Annual passes available.
Yaese Park Nighttime Lighting: 170 lanterns light up the cherry trees. Yaese Park. 6pm – 9pm. Free.
It’s whale watching season!!!