Osaka’s Hirakata Park Announces After-Hours Horror Event
09.July.2020 | SPOT
Hirakata Park has announced the horror-themed event “Yamibiraki no Yoru” which will be held at the Osaka amusement park during the night from August 26 to September 13.
Two Japanese horror entertainment companies are coming together to set up spooky spots around the park for the event. For the event, visitors will need to clear a mission to reach the goal which will involve the use of a smartphone or tablet.
Yamibiraki no Yoru – Synopsis
“There is a rumour that once a year, Hirakata Park opens up during the middle of the night. And though it’s open in the middle of the night, the only staff that can be spotted around are those with vacant looks in their eyes. What’s more is that there aren’t any visitors around. At some point, this rumour came to be called Yamibiraki no Yoru, ‘Open in Darkness.’ And this summer, an event is being held, on the same day that rumour was named, and with the same name…”
Scary School Stories VR x Real Scary Experience
Hirakata Park is also holding a haunted house event during the daytime from July 17, 2020. Themed on Kokkuri-san, a Japanese supernatural game, the event will combine the use of VR technology and real interactive scares.
Hirakata Park 2020 – “Yamibiraki no Yoru”
Location: Hirakata Park (Meeting Spot: Hirakata Park East Gate)
Running: August 26, 2020 – September 13, 2020 (Closed September 2 and 9)
Slots: 1. 19:00 2. 19:20 3. 19:40 4. 20:00 5. 20:20 (Required Time: 1 hour)
Ticket Price: ¥20,000 per group (max 4 people per group)
Ticket Release Date: July 11, 2020 from 10:00 (JST)
Ticket Vendor: Lawson (L-Code: 58003)
Official Website: https://www.mbs.jp/obake/
HARAJUKU COLLECTIVE, a Collaboration Between Hot Topic & Studio Ghibli, Gets Pop-Up Store at Shinsaibashi PARCO
Last year, the HARAJUKU COLLECTIVE collaboration appeared at AF Gallery in Harajuku from August 10 until August 28, garnering massive acclaim from fans. The collection is now being sold at Shinsaibashi PARCO until March 12, 2023.
HARAJUKU COLLECTIVE is a Studio Ghibli-inspired apparel collection by the popular American counterculture chain Hot Topic. Bringing more Japanese culture to the ongoing Studio Ghibli collaboration launched in 2014, Hot Topic stores began selling original items produced by nine Japanese creators and brands, as well as some original American items produced by Hot Topic’s executive designers.
The lineup of Japan-original items includes T-shirts, tote bags, and other items featuring exclusive artwork by up-and-coming creators. These items depict beloved characters from Studio Ghibli’s works, as well as logos created for the collaboration. Fans won’t want to miss grabbing these unique items!
Details on the Previous HARAJUKU COLLECTIVE Pop-Up Store: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/ja/625747
Running: February 23 – March 12, 2023
Venue: Shinsaibashi PARCO B1F Pop-Up Space (1-8-3 Shinsaibashisuji, Chuo-ku, Osaka)
Official Site: https://ghibli-harajukucollective-ec.com
Online Store (Open until March 31, 2023): https://ec.ghibli-harajukucollective-ec.com
HARAJUKU COLLECTIVE Official SNS:
Twitter: @harajuku_collect (https://twitter.com/harajukucollect)
Atarashii Gakko! to Perform Solo at Zepp Venues in Tokyo and Osaka in Spring 2023
16.January.2023 | MUSIC
Atarashii Gakko! will hold solo concerts at Zepp venues in Tokyo and Osaka in April and May of 2023.
These performances will be held almost a year after the girls held their solo concert at Zepp DiverCity in Tokyo last May. This year’s events will be held at Zepp Osaka Bayside on April 30 and Zepp Shinjuku in Tokyo on May 2.
ATARASHII GAKKO! – HANAKO (Official Music Video)
ATARASHII GAKKO! – Pineapple Kryptonite (Official Music Video)
Atarashii Gakko! at Tokyo & Osaka Zepp
-We’re working on some amazing new songs and we’re dying for everyone to see our newest evolution (Tentative title)-
April 30, 2023 – Zepp Osaka Bayside
May 2, 2023 – Zepp Shinjuku (Tokyo)
Fan’s Presale Tickets (Starting January 1)
Hirosaki and Hakodate to Begin Winter Tourism Campaign with Snow Miku Starting December 2022
The cities of Hirosaki and Hakodate in Hokkaido have announced that they will team up with Hatsune Miku’s popular iteration Snow Miku to promote tourism in the area this winter. A number of activities will begin in December 2022.
[Snow Miku x Hirohako] Collaboration Project
■Hirohako Winter Tourism Campaign Poster Featuring Snow Miku
・Period: Mid-November~February 28, 2023
・Locations: Facilities in both cities, tourist facilities, hotels, shopping areas
■Snow Miku Illustration Contest Exhibition Event
Over 50 illustrations have been submitted under the theme of Snow Miku and Hakodate / Snow Miku and Hirosaki. These will be on display through the winter!
・Running: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Venues: Hirosaki Municipal Tourist Center (Hirosaki)
Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse (Hakodate)
■Snow Miku Photo Spot
Snow Miku panels featuring shamisen and apples from Hirosaki will be on display, while the Hakodate version will include references to squid fishing and footbaths.
・On Display: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: JR Hirosaki Station, Chuohirosaki Station (Hirosaki)
JR Hakodate Station, Hakodate Airport (Hakodate)
■Digital Stamp Rally Using the Mikunavi App
A number of panels will be installed at five checkpoints in Hirosaki and Hakodate. A total of 1,000 people–500 in each city–will win original merch including a Snow Miku mask case and decorated masking tape. All you need to do is check in!
・Available: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: (Hirosaki) Hirosaki Municipal Tourist Center, Hirosaki City Machinaka Information Center,
Hirosaki Tourist Information Center, Hirosaki Castle Information Center, Tsugaru-han Neputa Village
(Hakodate) Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse, Yunokawa Hot Spring Footbath, Goryōkaku Tower,
Hakodate Green Plaza C Block (Hakodate Lumi-Pop), Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward
■Hirohako Winter Tourism Campaign Theme Song and Music Video
The tourism theme song will get a new music video that will be broadcast on YouTube, at local tourist facilities, and on TV and radio!
・On Air: December 1, 2022~
・Theme Song: Mahou no Keshiki (Lyrics/Composition: ryuryu)
■Snow Miku Welcome Announcements to be Broadcast at Tourism Facilities, etc.
A one-minute welcome announcement by Snow Miku will air at tourist facilities!
・Running: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: Tourist areas in both cities
■Snow Miku Filters Using AR
When each barcode is scanned with a smartphone, Snow Miku will appear on the screen! Visitors can take pictures with Snow Miku to commemorate their winter trip to Hirosaki and Hakodate.
・Available: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
Hirosaki x Hakodate x Snow Miku Tourism Campaign
Beginning December 2022
13th BT21 Cafe to Open in Tokyo, Yokohama, Nagoya, Osaka, and Sapporo
The 13th iteration of the BT21 Cafe will open at six venues in five cities around Japan. Fans in Tokyo, Yokohama, Nagoya, Osaka, and Sapporo will want to visit this exclusive event titled ~MAGICAL TIME~. The first cafe opens in Shibuya on November 3. In celebration of BT21’s 5th anniversary, this special cafe is filled with joy and excitement and aims to give fans the best possible experience.
Magical Tea Time Set
Food Plate (7 varieties)
Dessert Plate (7 varieties)
Magical Milk Tea
Iced Coffee / Hot Coffee
Acrylic Keychain (7 varieties, Random)
Acrylic Clip (7 varieties, Random)
Satin Sticker (7 varieties)
Clear Folder (2 varieties)
Handkerchief (7 varieties)
Masking Tape / Balloon on a Stick
Dolomite Coaster (2 varieties) / Mirror (2 varieties)
[Online Store Exclusive] Acrylic Keychain (7 varieties, Random)
The cafe’s new menu includes afternoon tea, perfect for warming the body and soul during the cold winter months. The colorful food items and desserts are sure to be a hit on social media, and fans will enjoy the Magical Milk Tea and other dishes inspired by the popular BT21 characters.
In addition to new merchandise and bonuses featuring newly-drawn art, a photo spot will welcome guests to the cafe and invite them to celebrate this five-year milestone.
Why not take a break from everyday life to enjoy a magical time with these cute characters?
BT21 Cafe #13 ~MAGICAL TIME~
BOX cafe&space SHIBUYA109
Running: November 3 – December 10, 2022
Address: SHIBUYA109 B2F (2-29-1 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo)
BOX cafe&space Tokyo Solamachi
Running: January 13 – February 19, 2023
Address: Tokyo Skytree Town, Solamachi 1F (1-1-2 Oshiage, Sumida-ku, Tokyo)
Collabo_Index Lumine Yokohama
Running: January 13 – February 5, 2023
Address: Lumine Yokohama 6F (2-16-1 Takashima, Nishi-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa)
BOX cafe&space Nagoya LACHIC #1
Running: December 2, 2022 – February 5, 2023
Address: LACHIC B1F (3-6-1 Sakae, Naka-ku, Nagoya, Aichi)
Running: November 11 – December 18, 2022
Address: 1-6-24 Kitahorie, Nishi-ku, Osaka
Cafe Interlude, Coach & Four Shinakawa
Running: November 3 – December 29, 2022
Address: 18-chome 3-jo, Kita-ku, Sapporo
Open: November 3, 11:00 – December 4, 23:59
Grand Front Osaka to Hold Harry Potter Christmas Event
The Grand Front Osaka mall has announced an incredible Christmas celebration in collaboration with the magical world of Harry Potter! Fans will want to visit the massive shopping center between November 10 and December 25 to take part in the festivities.
Harry Potter-Inspired Decorations
The highlight of the event is the 13-meter-tall Christmas Tree, which will be set up on the first floor of the mall’s North Building. The tree will be decorated with Harry Potter-inspired ornaments like moving staircases and window frames, which will look as though they are floating in the air. At night, a light show will take place around the tree, complete with projections inspired by the four houses of Hogwarts.
Decorated Ted E. Bear
Stamp Rally Card
House Flag Decorations
Tully’s Coffee and Harry Potter Collaboration Goods and Menu
Special Harry Potter-themed decorations will be attached to many trees in the area around the nearby Umekita Plaza, and fans can also find a Harry Potter panel exhibition. An Instagram photo campaign will be held in which visitors can enter to win collab merch, so don’t miss out!
Come make some magical memories at this Harry Potter event in Osaka this winter.
Grand Wish Christmas 2022
Harry Potter: An Invitation to the Wizarding World of Christmas
Running: November 10 – December 25, 2022 *Excluding certain contents
Venue: Grand Front Osaka North & South Wings, Umekita Plaza, etc.
Luxury Brand Montblanc Announces Naruto Collaboration Collection
Today, luxury brand Montblanc launched a new collaboration collection with the popular anime and manga series Naruto. Items from the collection are available to purchase worldwide.
Since its release 20 years ago, Naruto has captured the hearts of fans around the world with its inspiring story and beloved characters. The designs featured in the new collection feature illustrations of the character printed in dynamic poses. The collection features everything from leather goods to writing instruments.
The new items highlight Naruto’s relationship with his mentor Jiraiya, stressing the importance of mentors and knowledge. The brushstroke-like curves on each piece emphasize the anime style, and all bags come in a refined black color with orange accents.
To celebrate the launch of this collaboration, a special short anime was created to highlight the power of writing and communication. The brief animation shows Jiraiya reflecting on Naruto’s journey and the ample advice he passed down while focusing on what’s important in life. Meanwhile, Naruto uses a fountain pen to write down what it really means to be a ninja.
The collection also features a new edition of Montblanc’s iconic Meisterstück. The special-edition fountain pen features a Hidden Leaf Village motif in gold with a matching nib and a ruthenium-coated embellishment.
A special pop-up store is open on the first floor of Hankyu Men’s Osaka until October 18. By snapping a photo of the collaboration products and posting it on social media with the hashtag #MontblancXNaruto, fans can snag an original Montblanc x Naruto memory card game. Additionally, those making a purchase will get an original furoshiki!
Whether you’re a fan of Naruto or a fan of Montblanc’s goods, this collaboration might be impossible to pass up.
Montblanc x Naruto
Release Date: October 12, 2022
Venue: Hankyu Mens Osaka 1F
Running: October 12 – October 18, 2022
The #KuromifyTheWorld Project Celebrates First Anniversary with Special Week of Events
06.October.2022 | FASHION
The #KuromifyTheWorld campaign is already one year old! Created to share the adorable Sanrio character Kuromi with the world, fans will be invited to celebrate this milestone from October 20 until October 31 with special events in Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya.
Kuromi’s Drink Stand will be open for a limited time in Tokyo and Osaka. Customers will be invited to choose the color of their drink according to their mood, and will also be able to customize it with tags, acrylic stands, and stickers! An original photo spot will also be set up beside each drink stand, and those wanting to attend can enter the lottery to win tickets now.
Sanrio’s first and largest Kuromi ad truck will also be driving through the streets of Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka during the event week.
Kuromi will also be teaming up with (G)I-DLE, a popular five-member global idol group from South Korea. Campaigns are planned to appear in Hangzhou, Suzhou, Taiwan, Korea, North America, and Europe.
Kuromi ranked in the top three in this year’s Sanrio Character Awards, and her popularity is steadily growing with Gen-Z. Keep an eye out for more Kuromi-inspired events in the future!
・Kuromi’s Drink Stand:
Shinjuku, Tokyo: October 20 – October 24, 2022
Shinsaibashi, Osaka: October 29 – October 31, 2022
・#KuromifyTheWorld Ad Truck:
Tokyo: October 20 – October 24
Nagoya: October 26 – October 27
Osaka: October 29 – October 31
Japan’s Largest Fireworks Show Opens with 800 Drones and 45,000 Fireworks
01.October.2022 | SPOT
To promote the 2025 Osaka Expo, hundreds of drones and thousands of fireworks lit up the sky at the planned site for the event. SKYMAGIC LIVE PTE. LTD., known for creating original shows using drones, put on the show on Yumeshima, a man-made island in Osaka’s Konohana Ward on September 25, 2022. The event was the first large-scale outdoor drone show in the Kansai region, with 800 LED-equipped drones flying through the night sky.
Nearly 15,000 visitors were in attendance at this spectacular event. The event aims to promote a hopeful future in which Japan thrives after the impact of the pandemic, and also aims to promote the upcoming Expo to people around the world. 45,000 fireworks were set off, marking one of the largest fireworks displays in Japan. Launched to rid the area of bad luck, guests will likely never forget the unique display of futuristic technology and traditional fireworks.
As the fireworks show began, countless drones took off one after another into the sky. As many would expect, Myak Myak, the official character of the Osaka/Kansai Expo, appeared above the crowd, standing 135 meters tall and 80 meters wide. A countdown to the Expo appeared after, with the Let’s Go Expo 2025 logo shining in the sky, made entirely by synchronized drones.
Archived live footage of the event is also available.
Ryota Shirahama, chairman of the event’s organizing committee, made a comment regarding the impressive event. “Japan’s resurgence is about to begin,” he said. “The world has been looking down, and we want it to look up. We want people to look towards the future–that’s the goal of this project. Yes, there was a pandemic. But like the phoenix seen during the drone show, we can start over. I hope that those who saw the show will be inspired to take a new step forward.”
Let’s Go Expo 2025 Countdown 3 ~Yumeshima Fireworks~
NAKED to Open DANDELION PROJECT for Peace in Umeda, Osaka
26.September.2022 | SPOT
NAKED and Ryotaro Muramatsu’s interactive art installation, the DANDELION PROJECT, is coming to Umeda, Osaka. The project aims to connect people around the world, stressing the importance of world peace. Those wanting to participate may do so from October 7 until October 9 at Umekita Sotoniwa Square.
In July 2020, Umekita Sotoniwa SQUARE opened under a unique premise–it would be open for 1,000 days only. The outdoor area was inspired by cities of the future, featuring plenty of green space. The DANDELION PROJECT fits in perfectly with this concept, using modern technology and networking to create art that also serves as a universal prayer for peace. This is the second time the work has been exhibited in Osaka–it was shown in Nakanoshima during the Osaka Hikari no Renaissance 2021 event last December.
The DANDELION PROJECT is inspired by the idea of world peace and hopes to help transcend barriers and connect people in an increasingly divided world. So far, it has appeared in 25 locations–19 in Japan and six abroad. In Japan, it has popped up at Tokyo Tower, Nijo Castle, and other historical sites. Abroad, it has been shown in Paris, Singapore, San Francisco, and Shanghai. The piece aims to bring about change by planting (or installing) dandelion-inspired art around the world, while it invites people visiting these dandelion exhibits to send their prayers for peace as a digital flower in real-time.
The exhibition will also be a satellite venue for NAKED GARDEN ONE KYOTO, a next-gen art project allowing guests to experience Kyoto virtually from September 15 until December 25, 2022.
NAKED – DANDELION
Running: October 7 – October 9, 2022
Venue: Umekita Sotoniwa Square
*Open daily during event period
Official Site: https://sotoniwa-uk.com/
Abeno Q’s Mall Announces Collaboration with Street Fighter II Starting October 1
Street Fighter II will collaborate with a commercial facility for the first time in history! The beloved fighting game will take over Abeno Q’s Mall in Osaka from October 1 until October 31, 2022. Popular characters from the game will appear all over the premises, and visitors will be able to take part in unique games to win exclusive prizes.
There are also a number of interesting challenges that will pop up around Abeno Q’s Mall. At the entrance, visitors will be greeted by Ryu and Ken, the main characters from Street Fighter II, as they unleash their Hadouken. Guests will be able to take pictures with Ryu with a special AR Photo Spot, and characters and stages from the title will appear around the mall. A participatory game event, Street Fighter Challenge, will be available for customers spending ¥3,000 or more (including tax). These customers will actually be able to test their Street Fighter skills, with winners winning a ¥500 yen mall gift card if they are victorious. Fans of the fighting game won’t want to miss this unique event!
© CAPCOM CO., LTD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Abeno Q’s Mall/Street Fighter II Collaboration
Running: October 1 – October 31, 2022
Address: 1-6-1 Abenosuji, Abeno-ku, Osaka
Official Site: https://qs-mall.jp/abeno
Special ‘Roots of Kawaii’ Exhibition Marking Rune Naito’s 90th Birthday to Open in October
A special exhibition commemorating the 90th birthday of Rune Naito will be held at the Hanshin department store in Osaka from October 19 until October 31. Titled ‘Roots of Kawaii,’ the event will look back at the life of the esteemed artist, illustrator, writer, and designer. Known for his illustrations of large-headed baby-faced girls, he first became interested in art after discovering the works of Jun’ichi Nakahara, joining Nakahara’s company after graduating high school. In 1959, Naito got his big break, designing the cover of the girls’ magazine Junior Soleil. Following this, Naito would become active as an illustrator for a number of magazines, and from the 1960s on, he began other activities, even producing a line of commercial goods from glassware to stickers.
The exhibition’s theme is ‘Life’s fantastic dreams,’ and over 300 items will be on display, including rare original drawings, goods, personal sketches, and more. The event will be held in celebration of Rune Naito’s birthday on November 20, and will also feature a special shop. Admission is ¥1,000 for adults, ¥700 for high school and college students, and free for junior high school students and younger. Discounts are available by preordering tickets. For details and tickets, check out the official website.
Rune Naito’s 90th Birthday Exhibition
Running: October 19 – October 31, 2022
Venue: Hanshin Department Store, Umeda Main Store 8F
(1-13-13 Umeda, Kita-ku, Osaka)
Sebastian Masuda to Unveil Hands-On Live Performance Work
From September 30 until October 2, 2022, artist Sebastian Masuda will present a hands-on live performance work titled Polychromatic Skin – Minitsukeru, nugisuteru at kagoo in Kitakagaya, Osaka.
Masuda, who currently resides in New York, is returning to Japan temporarily to prevent this colorful and experimental participatory live performance, inspired by the street style of the 90s. The title of the artwork is pulled from the artist’s intention to break through and liberate people’s unconscious stereotypes that stand in the way of gender freedom. This work is the second in a series following Polychromatic Skin -Gender Tower- and Polychromatic Skin -Gender Wall- to be exhibited at Roppongi Art Night 2022.
The theme of this art piece is ‘wearing something by taking it off.’ Audience members will participate in the live performance by wearing masks, tops, and bottoms based on the idea of androgyny, or the body of a human before it is divided into male or female.
Upon entering the art space, guests will be surrounded by live music consisting of drums and violins and visuals, while being invited to act accordingly to create their own art. Each session lasts 60 minutes, and participation in the live performance must be reserved in advance. Tickets to view the works without participating in the performance will be sold at the venue on the day of the event.
The performance will take place at kagoo, a former warehouse space in Kitakagaya, an artistic area of Osaka. A free area at the entrance will feature a pop-up store filled with Sebastian Masuda’s art, along with items from 6%DOKIDOKI, a popular Harajuku apparel brand celebrating its 27th anniversary in 2022.
<Comment from Sebastian Masuda>
“In Brooklyn, New York in 2018, I wandered off to go to the restroom at a club. The male and female signs on the restroom doors had been smashed together, and the sign only said ‘non-gender.’ Bewildered by the unexpected instructions, I opened the door with the usual color and found a completely different sight than I was expecting. Shocked to realize that there were stereotypes hiding unconsciously within me, I returned to the club floor to find the space is as fun as ever. Since then, I’ve wondered if there is a way to break the stereotypes I have. I can’t stop thinking about it.
Is breaking down the walls the only shortcut?
The right answer is inside all of us.
Sometimes, to see the truth, you just need to put something on.
Cast off the self by taking it off.”
Polychromatic Skin -Take Off by Wearing-
Running: September 30 – October 2, 2022
Venue: kagoo (5-4-19 Kitakagaya, Suminoe-ku, Osaka)