Tokyo Cheapo Downtown Drinks #10 (Aug 5): Dive into the weekend with the TC crew and fellow readers at Tokyo’s hippest outdoor food court Commune 246. There will be good vibes, good people and plenty of good food and drink on offer, including vegan options. More details.
Firework Festivals (Aug 6): If you didn’t catch the massive Sumida fireworks event last weekend, you have four more to choose from this weekend: the Itabashi Fireworks Festival (northwest Tokyo), the Edogawa Fireworks Festival (east Tokyo) , the Ome City Nohryo Fireworks Festival (west Tokyo) and the Akishima Citizen Whale Festival Yume Hanabi (west Tokyo). The first two are fairly big productions (over 10,000 “fire flowers”—as translated from Japanese), with Ome and Akishima being smaller affairs with just 3,200 and 2,000 displays respectively. All of them run for about for 1-1.5 hours.
Fussa Tanabata Festival (Aug 4-7): Tanabata is a popular summer festival where you write down your wish on a piece of colorful paper and hang it from bamboo trees. Accompanying that tradition are various parades including a folk dance parade, character shows and other events and 100 local-run stalls that line the street. More details.
Asagaya Tanabata Festival (Aug 5-9): In its 62nd year, the Asagaya district is celebrating its version of the Tanabata festival. The festival is famous for its paper-mâché recreations of cartoon characters as well as the traditional Japanese games and a great diversity of foods. More details.
Dancing Pikachu Horde (Aug 7-14): One of Tokyo’s newer events, the Dancing Pikachu Horde is back by popular demand. Starting Sunday, catch (and join) 1000 electric mice shimmying and shaking around Yokohama’s Minatomirai area. More details.
Stand-up Comedy at Good Heavens Bar – Headliner JR de Guzman (Aug 5-6): What better way to spend your weekend than by laughing your buns off for an evening (or two!). JR de Guzman (who has opened for big name acts) combines music and comedy, serenading the audience into laughter with songs, jokes, and stories of traveling the world, life after college, and family. Details and ticket info here.
A famous park, a former black market and a whole heap of museums—get to know Ueno: