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Tokyo Area Family Events and Activities – November 14 & 15, 2015

Here are Best Living Japan’s recommended Tokyo area family events and activities for the weekend of November 14th and 15th, 2015. Looks like we might have more wet and cold weather this weekend so bundle up to enjoy the autumn food and foliage, snow and festive holiday shopping.  Learn, laugh & live.

Tokyo Area Family Events and Activities – November 14 & 15, 2015

franciscanchapelcentertokyo.org/Latest-News/christmas-boutique-a-mrs-clauss-bake-shop1. Franciscan Chapel Center’s Christmas Boutique and Mrs. Claus’s Bake Shop (Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo) – I am pretty loyal about not decorating for Christmas until the day after Thanksgiving (Nov 26th), but I do enjoy a good church Christmas Boutique and Bake Sale!  If you are starting to get in the holiday mood, and maybe just missing home a bit, you should attend the Franciscan Chapel Center’s 6th annual Christmas Boutique!  Bring a friend and share in the holiday spirit while shopping an assortment of Christmas decorations, gifts and crafts, including bone china accents, exquisite obi, handmade pottery, washi cards, jewelry and much more! Visit Mrs. Claus’s Bake Shop to purchase homemade goodies!

Franciscan Chapel Center’s Christmas BoutiqueEvent Details
Date & Time: Sunday, November 15, 9:00 – 14:00
Address: 4-2-37 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Cost: free admission
Access: 5 min walk from Roppongi Station
Website: http://franciscanchapelcentertokyo.org (in English)
Toilets: yes
Child friendly: yes

2. The Icho Festival (Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo)  – As mentioned in the eight best locations for autumn foliage article Icho Namiki (Ginko Avenue in Aoyama) is a magnificent location for viewing the brilliant yellow colors. At the end the main road there is an Ichou FestivalIchou Matsuri that will run from this Saturday, Nov 14th through Dec 6th. Over 80 food, beverage and lifestyle stores will participate serving all types of Autumn matsuri (festival) delicacies. I visited the other day, and the leaves are still a bit green, my guess is peak will be Nov 20-27. Mid to the end of November will be very crowded on the weekends so go on M-F, or early on Sat or Sun. Ginko Avenue is located a three mins walk from Aoyama- Itchome station on the Ginza or Hanzomon Lines. The festival will be open daily from Nov 14-Dec 6th from 10:00-16:30. More details can be found in Japanese on the event website. http://www.meijijingugaien.jp/event/ginkgo-festa.html

3. Farms and Kids Festival  第6回ファーマーズ&キッズフェスタ2015 (Hibiya Park, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo) – To educate children on food and animals various agricultural groups hold this annual event. There are all types of Japan autumn vegtablesproduce on display, workshops and stage performances to amuse kids and adults of all ages.  You kids will also be able to see ducks, a sheep, goats and other small animals at the petting area. I need to do some shopping at Muji and Itoya this weekend, so I am planning to combine the trip. Hope to see some of you there on Saturday morning.

Farmers and Kids

Farms and Kids Festival Event Details
Date & Time: Saturday, November 14 & Sunday, November 15th, 10:00 – 16:00 (rain or shine)
Address: Hibiya Park, 1-6 Hibiya Park, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
Cost: free entrance
Access: 2-5 min walk from Kasumigaseki Station on the Marunouchi Line, or Hibiya Station on the Chiyoda Line
Website: http://farmerskids.jp/ (in English) PDF http://farmerskids.jp/pdf/side_flyer2015.pdf
Toilets: yes
Child friendly: yes

4. Check out and try some wild Roppongi Hills Snowboarding (Roppongi, Tokyo) Burton Roppongi Hills Snowboarding – Yes, you read that correctly Burton builds a huge slope of snow in Roppongi Hills on Saturday, November 14th where they host the world’s largest street snowboarding contest.  In addition to the excitement of watching top professional snowboarders compete live and in person, Burton Rail Days also includes all-day activities for the entire family leading up to the competition. The venue opens to the public from 11:00 am – 5:00 pm on November 14th with an interactive sponsor village featuring, food, fun, giveaways and more. Kids ages 3-6 years old can also learn to snowboard for free on mini park features in the Burton Riglet Park.This event is completely FREE and 18 of the best international rail riders competing for the $27,000 prize purse. This year, confirmed riders include Zak Hale (USA), Ethan Deiss (USA), Darcy Sharpe (CAN), Marc Swoboda (AUT), Yuma Abe (JPN), Ryusei Takahashi (JPN) and 2014 Rail Days Champion Zach Aller (CAN).  More details here in English. 

5. Walk in Meiji Jingu Shrine and see children dressed in kimono celebrating 7-5-3 (Yoyogi, Tokyo)

Shichi go san Meiji Jingu ShrineNovember is the month of foliage in Tokyo, but also the month that girls ages 7 & 3 and boys 5 celebrate coming of age. November 15th is the actual date of 7-5-3, but families celebrate by dressing up the children and visiting shrines across Japan throughout the month of November. You can find children celebrating at most major shrines, however, Meiji Jingu is one of the most popular.  If you are interested in celebrating, you can find details on kimono rentals and shrines here.Tokyo motor show Also this month there is a chrysanthemum exhibit in Meiji Jingu  Shrine to enjoy.

More details on Shichi-Go-San (七五三, lit. “Seven-Five-Three”) from wikipedia. 7-5-3 is a traditional rite of passage and festival day in Japan for three and seven-year-old girls and five-year-old boys, held annually on November 15 to celebrate the growth and well-being of young children. As it is not a national holiday, it is generally observed on the nearest weekend.  Shichi-Go-San is said to have originated in the Heian Period amongst court nobles who would celebrate the passage of their children into middle childhood. The ages 3, 5 and 7 are consistent with East Asian numerology, which claims that odd numbers are lucky. The practice was set to the fifteenth of the month during the Kamakura Period. Over time, this tradition passed to the samurai class who added a number of rituals. Children—who up until the age of three were required by custom to have shaven heads—were allowed to grow out their hair. Boys of age five could wear hakama for the first time while girls of age seven replaced the simple cords they used to tie their kimono with the traditional obi. By the Meiji Period, the practice was adopted amongst commoners as well and included the modern ritual of visiting a shrine to drive out evil spirits and wish for a long healthy life.

Meiji Jingu Shrine Information
Opening Days: open everyday
Times: November open 6:10 to 16:10
Address: Meiji Jingu, 1-1 Yoyogi-Kamizono-cho, Shibuya-ku,
Cost: free admission
Access: 5 min walk from Harajuku station
Website: http://www.meijijingu.or.jp/english/ (in English)
Toilets: public toilets about a 10 minute walk into the shrine park area, and then at the shrine
Child friendly: yes, but path is pebbles so strollers with small tires do not work well



Tokyo Area Family Events and Activities – November 14 & 15, 2015


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