With Halloween just around the corner, it’s time to choose a costume and plan which spooky parades and parties to attend. When it comes to shopping for a costume, there’s a number of different places to try – ranging from ¥100 shops to specialist online stores such as Halloween Land. However, if you’re looking for something to set you apart from the crowd, try the Cosplay Kan on the fifth floor of Don Quixote in Akihabara. After choosing what to wear, all that’s left is deciding on the parade or party at which to wear it. However, while dressing up is certainly one way to enjoy the festivities, it certainly isn’t the only way. Listed below, in addition to a selection of costume parades and parties, are a number of more relaxed events, including jack-o'-lantern displays and two events that offer guests a selection of pumpkin dishes.
Get your costume on
Roppongi Heartland Halloween Party 2010
An annual Halloween party hosted by Heartland’s Concept Bar in Roppongi, at which ten lucky guests who come in costume have a chance of being selected as either a Halloween Prince or Princess with prizes.
Date: Sat Oct 30
Location: Heartland (Full details & map)
Roppongi Hills Halloween Parade 2010
From Saturday October 23, Happy Halloween 2010 at Roppongi Hills will be offering visitors a number of Halloween treats, including special Halloween menus and Halloween related goodies. However, the main event to look out for here is the annual Halloween Parade – an event that takes place on Saturday October 30 and involves both children who, dressed in all manner of spooky costumes, march from the Roppongi Hills Arena to Keyakizaka-dori and through the Mori Garden before returning to the arena. Those wishing to take part in the event need to register at the Roppongi Hills Arena on the day of the event from 10:30am (note: in the case of rain the parade will be cancelled). Plus, as an added bonus, those who come in fancy dress can also receive a special privilege at the ‘Tokyo City View’ observation deck.
Date: Sat Oct 30
Location: Roppongi Hills (Full details & map)
Umegaoka Cat’s Halloween 2010
Organized by the Umegaoka Shopping District Promotion Association, Umegaoka Cat’s Halloween 2010 includes a range of activities for both children and adults. In addition to both a fancy dress competition and a costume parade, visitors can also look forward to making their own jack-o'-lanterns, a horror house and trick-or-treat activities. In a competition held by the Bureau of Industrial and Labour Affairs, the Dai Gokai Tokyo Shotengai Grand Prix, Umegaoka Cat’s Halloween 2008 won second prize.
Date: Sat Oct 30
Location: Umegaoka Station (Odakyu Line) , South Exit
Harajuku Omotesando Hello Halloween Pumpkin Parade
The Hello Halloween Pumpkin Parade, an annual Halloween parade in which approximately 1,000 children under the age of twelve dress up in costumes to form a parade that spans the 700m long zelkova tree-lined section of Omotesando, takes place for the 28th time this year. In addition to the parade itself, the event also offers children a special Okashi Rally Map that shows the whereabouts of a number of local shops that will be giving away free okashi (sweets). To take part in the event, telephone the Hello Halloween Pumpkin Parade office on (03)5766 2778. (Event details)
Omotesando Hills Halloween Night Fever!
An event scheduled for the final day of the Omotesando Hills Halloween 2010 festivities, in which parents and children can enjoy a number of activities together, such as a fashion show and a dance party under a shining disco ball. Additionally, the event also includes a booth area where food and drinks from around the world will be available, including Dutch waffles, soup and Halloween cheese, English pumpkin pie and Indian chicken tikka. Also scheduled is a fancy dress photo competition where contestants have the chance to win a range of fantastic prizes, including airline tickets and hotel stays. (Event details)
Halloween things to see
Halloween Party 2010
A Halloween event held at the Yumenoshima Tropical Greenhouse Dome (a botanical garden located on Dream Island, Tokyo) that offers visitors the chance to view and touch as many as fifty giant pumpkins that each weigh between 50kg and 100kg. (Event details)
Shinagawa Aquarium’s Halloween Festival 2010
To celebrate Halloween in its own spooky way, Shinagawa Aquarium is exhibiting a number of ghost-like sea creatures, such as a peculiar species of blind cave tetra and a black-bodied, phantom-like species of fish known as the black ghost knifefish. Other special Halloween attractions include being photographed alongside moon jellyfish, and sea lion shows in which sea lions perform using pumpkin lanterns. Additionally, on Saturday October 30 and Sunday October 31, five lucky groups (chosen by a lottery) will win the chance to have their picture taken with dolphins. For the duration of the special Halloween festivities, those wearing pumpkin or monster accessories as well as those who come in costume can enjoy discounted admission prices.
Date: Until Sun Oct 31
Time: Mon, Wed-Sun 10am-5pm (last entry 4.30pm), closed Tue
Location: Shinagawa Aquarium
Address: 3-2-1 Katsushima, Shinagawa, Tokyo
Telephone: (03)3762 3431
Admission: ¥1,300; elementary and junior high school students ¥600; children 4 and under ¥300
Halloween Candle Night
Coinciding with the flowering of their autumn roses, from Saturday until Sunday November 14, Keisei Rose Garden will be holding an autumn fair that will include a number of special attractions, including various concerts, a flower photography competition and, for anyone who might like to enjoy their Halloween amidst the sweet scent of autumn roses. On the evening of Sunday October 31, a display of flickering candlelit Halloween lanterns will be adding to the ambience.
Date: Sat Oct 30
Location: Keisei Rose Garden
Address: Oowada-Shinden, Yachiyo, Chiba
Telephone: (047)459 0106
Admission: ¥800; ¥400 junior high school students; ¥200 elementary school students
Halloween for gourmets
Happy Halloween 2010
In celebration of Halloween, the Keio Plaza Hotel in Shinjuku will be holding a Halloween themed food fair. Guests attending in fancy dress can receive gifts such as kegani (horsehair crab) and a special Halloween drink and commemorative photographs. Additionally, the second-floor Super Buffet Glass Court will be offering a range of eye-catching Halloween themed cuisine, including a cheese and pumpkin gratin Obake Kabocha no Gratin, pumpkin soup, pumpkin salad and various different pumpkin desserts.
Date: Until Sun Oct 31
Time: Weekday lunch 11.45am-3pm; Weekday dinner 5.30-10pm; Weekend/holiday lunch 11.45-3.30pm; Weekend/holiday dinner 5-10pm; Happy Halloween Party: First seating 5-7pm, Second seating 7.30-9.30pm
Location: Keio Plaza Hotel, Super Buffet Glass Court
Telephone: (03)3344 0111
Prices: Lunch, adults (weekdays) ¥3,500; Lunch, adults (weekend/holiday) ¥3,900; Dinner, adults (weekdays) ¥5,400; Dinner, adults (weekend/holiday) ¥6,400. Prices include tax and service charge. Senior citizens, elementary school children and infant prices differ. Please inquire.
Halloween at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo
On Saturday October 30 and Sunday October 31, The Oak Door sixth-floor steakhouse at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo will be offering guests a special set-course menu consisting entirely of pumpkin dishes, including a creamy pumpkin soup with pumpkin seeds, a salad made with pumpkin and kuruma-ebi (Japanese tiger prawns), a risotto made with pumpkin and rosemary, grilled chicken and pumpkin with mashed green beans, and even pumpkin pie with pumpkin flavoured ice cream for dessert.
Date: Sat Oct 30-Sun Oct 31
Location: Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Full details & map)
Telephone: (03)4333 1234
Admission: ¥6,500 (tax included, service charge extra)
Translated by Brin Wilson