16th Annual I Love Ibaraki Fureai Festival

When: 10am – 4:30pm, April 8th 2017
Where: The Former Prefectural Office Building (Sannomaru Chousha) (1-5-48 Sannomaru, Mito)
Access: 15 minutes’ walk from Mito Station
Website

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The I Love Ibaraki Fureai Festival is a chance for Ibarakians to celebrate local food and culture under the cherry blossoms that bloom around the old castle moat in Sannomaru. The festival will include stalls selling local specialties from around Ibaraki, a bazaar, stage performances, a walking tour around Sannomaru, a stamp rally, and the chance to decorate an old bus with graffiti!

Stage Events

10:00 Blue Beginners (Mito Technical High School Jazz Band)
12:00 Blue Hawks (Oarai High School Marching Band)
13:00 Sannomaru Elementary School Brass Band

121st Annual Mito Plum Festival

When: February 18th – March 31st
Where: Kairakuen and the Kodokan, Mito

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Access via Public Transport
Kairakuen: Take a bus heading to Kairakuen from Bus Stop 4 or 6 on the north side of Mito Station (see map here http://www.koen.pref.ibaraki.jp/foreign_language/en/access_info/index.html)
Kodokan: 8 minutes’ walk north of Mito Station (see map here: http://www.koen.pref.ibaraki.jp/park/kodokan06.html)

Admission
Kairakuen: Free
Kobuntei: Adults 200 yen, junior high school and younger 100 yen
Kodokan: Adults 200 yen, junior high school and younger 100 yen, over 70 free

Opening Hours
Kairakuen: 6am – 7pm (7am to 6pm until February 19th)
Kobuntei: 9am – 5pm (9am – 4:30pm until February 19th)
Kodokan: 9am – 5pm (9am – 4:30pm until February 19th)

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The Plum Blossoms of Kairakuen

There are approximately 100 varieties of plum tree growing in Kairakuen, and they all bloom at different times. Early blooming varieties (hayazaki) begin around mid-January to mid-February, mid-season blooming varieties (nakazaki) around early February to mid-March, and late blooming varieties (osozaki) around early March to early April. These times can vary every year though, depending on the climate.

Of the 3000 plum trees in Kairakuen, only around half of them can be said to be of a particular variety (the other half being mixes of a number of varieties resulting in an unnamed variety). The most common among those with clear names is the Shirakaga variety, of which there are nearly 450 trees. The next most common is the Tōjibai, with 150 trees, followed by Yaekankō, with 130 trees.

Although the trees bloom roughly as described above, they are greatly affected by weather and precipitation, so it is not an exact timeline. This is why you should visit Kairakuen several times to stroll around the park and appreciate the many forms of the plum blossoms.

Early Blooming Varieties (Mid-January to Mid-February)

The Yaekankō, Shironaniwa, Yaetōji, and Rekkōbai varieties are representative of the early blooming plum tree varieties, and can be found scattered around Kairakuen. In particular, the Yaekankō in the East-West Plum Forest near the East Gate and the Shironaniwa by the Onari Gate are well known and among the first to bloom. Searching for the few flowers that have blossomed among the majority that are still in their bud forms is one of the most enjoyable things to do during the early blooming season.

Mid-season Blooming Varieties (Late February to Mid-March)

The single-petaled Tsukikage with its distinct silhouette and the soft and fluffy Tora-no-o are exemplary of the mid-season blooming varieties. They can be found scattered around the park in the Western Plum Forest and other locations, and are known for their fragrance and colour. It is when the mid-season varieties are in bloom that you can fully feel the coming of spring and enjoy the grand sight of many plum trees in full bloom.

Late Blooming Varieties (Early March to Early April)

The Shirakaga, Kasugano, and Kōnanshomu varieties are representative of late blooming plum trees. In particular Shirakaga trees can be seen all around the park. They bloom slowly and decorate the end of the plum blossom season. The end of the season is when you should savour the last of the blossoms before they are gone.

Precautions against the Spread of Avian Influenza (from the Mito Municipal Government website)

In December 2016, a case of avian influenza was discovered in a wild bird at Lake Senba, which is located beside Kairakuen. As a result, precautions are being taken at Lake Senba to prevent the spread of avian influenza.

People who do not have any particular contact with birds in their everyday lives are not thought to be at risk of contracting the virus, so there is no need to worry excessively. Please remain calm and take action based on information from official sources. We ask for your cooperation in the following:

1. There is a possibly of the virus spreading via bird droppings becoming stuck to people’s shoes, so if you step on bird droppings around Lake Senba please use the calcium hydroxide that has been provided on the jogging course to disinfect your shoes. You can do so simply by stepping into the box.

Caution:

  • Calcium hydroxide is a powerful alkaline, so please avoid direct contact with your skin
  • People with multiple chemical sensitivity should take special care
  • If the calcium hydroxide gets on your skin, wash the affected area thoroughly
  • If it gets in your eye, wash it out with clean water and consult a doctor immediately
  • If ingested, wash your mouth out and consult a doctor immediately

2. Take the following actions to prevent the spread of avian influenza:

  • Keep away from the birds
  • Do not feed the birds
  • If you find a dead bird, contact the Parks and Green Space Division (公園緑地課) immediately
  • Take care not to step in bird droppings
  • Do not ride your bike in the park
  • Do not fish or play around bodies of water

Inquiries (Japanese only)
Parks and Green Space Division, Mito Municipal Government (029-224-1111)
Mito Parks Association (029-244-2895)

Events

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Major Events

4th Annual National Umeshu Festival in Mito

When: March 3rd – 5th, 10am – 4pm (until 3pm on March 5th)
Where: Tokiwa Shrine Grounds

At the National Umeshu Festival you will have the opportunity to sample and compare umeshu from Hokkaido all the way down to Okinawa. You can also enjoy the coupling of umeshu with a variety of dishes and umeshu cocktails.

Night Plum Festival

When:
Kodokan – March 4th, 6 – 9pm
Kairakuen – March 11, 6 – 9pm

The Night Plum Festival will feature candle displays, showing off the beauty of the plum trees in a different light. The festival finale will feature Mito fireworks.

Event Schedule

Presenting of Plum Festival Opening Memorial Gifts
When: February 18h, 9am onwards
Where: Kairakuen East Gate

Mito-chan Birthday Party
When: February 18th – 19st, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Outdoor Tea Ceremony by High School Students (Taisei Girls’ High School)
When: February 25th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Outdoor Tea Ceremony (Sekishū-ryu Style)
When: February 26th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Taya Staff Technique Demonstration
When: February 26th, 10:30 – 11:30am
Where: The Kodokan Taishijō

Mito Hina-nagashi (Hitachi Washi Doll Association)
When: February 26th, 11am – 12pm
Where: Kairakuen Togyokusen Spring

Kids’ Hina-matsuri
When: February 26th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Outdoor Tea Ceremony by High School Students (Tokiwa University High School)
When: March 4th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Martial Arts Demonstration (Mito Tobukan/ Hōzōin-ryū)
When: March 4th, 10 – 12:00pm
Where: The Kodokan Taishijō

Goken Kōbai Hina-nagashi (Five Town Community)
When: March 4th, 11am – 12pm
Where: Kairakuen Togyokusen Spring

Biwa Performance
When: March 4th, 1 – 1:30pm
Where: Kodokan Seicho

70th Annual Photography Session and Photo Contest
When: March 5th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Plum Forest, Miharashi Hiroba, and other locations

Outdoor Tea Ceremony (Enshū-ryu Style)
When: March 5th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Plum Viewing Kimono Day
When: 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Sword and Poetry Dancing (Ibaraki Ginei Kenshibu Federation)
When: March 11th, 10:30 – 11:30am
Where: Kodokan Taishijō

Outdoor Tea Ceremony (Edosenke)
When: March 12th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairaikuen Miharashi Hiroba

Outdoor Tea Ceremony by High School Students (Sakuranomaki High School)
When: March 18th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Kodokan Open Lecture
When: March 18th, 1:30 – 3pm (Mito Shigaku Kensankai Yoshida Juku)
Where: Kodokan Seicho

Outdoor Tea Ceremony (Urasenke)
When: March 19th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

71st Annual Plum Viewing Haiku Contest (Hitachino)
When: March 19th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Ibaraki Prefectural Youth Hall

Outdoor Tea Ceremony by High School Students (Suijo High School)
When: March 25th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Outdoor Tea Ceremony (Omotesenke)
When: March 26th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

Plum Viewing Entertainment Festival
When: March 26th, 10am – 3pm
Where: Kairakuen Miharashi Hiroba

53rd Annual Mito Komon Festival

Dates : Aug 2-4, 2013

Location : North and South of Mito Station

This famous festival has been held the first weekend of August every year since 1961, celebrating the last lord of the Mito Domain. The festival itself is one of the biggest held in Ibaraki all year, and features a show of 4500 fireworks, a parade with dancing, portable shrines, and floats, and community carnivals.

Schedule:

August 2nd       Lake Senba         7:30-8:30pm         Firework exhibition (postponed to Aug 9th in case of rough weather)

 

August 3rd         From Mito Central Post Office to Daiku-machi (North)

10am – 9pm    Floats

2pm – 4pm    Mito Komon Parade

2pm – 3pm     Children’s portable shrine parade

4:30 – 9pm     Mito Community Carnival

Between Hon-cho 1 and Hon-cho 3

10:30am – 12pm  Mito Komon Parade

2 – 9pm         Hon-cho Town Festival

Mito Art Gallery Plaza

1 – 8:30pm      Summer Dream Music

Minami-machi Free Plaza

10am – 9pm    Summer Dream Festa

Mito Station North Exit Pedestrian Deck

11am – 5pm     Town Festival

August 4th         From Mito Central Post Office to Daiku-machi (North)

10am – 9pm    Floats

2 – 6pm        Portable shrine parade

6 – 9pm        Town Festival

Between Hon-cho 1 and Hon-cho 3

10am – 12:30pm  Portable shrine parade

Mito Art Gallery Plaza

12:30 – 8:30pm    Summer Dream Music

Minami-machi Free Plaza

10am – 9pm    Summer Dream Festa

Mito Station North Exit Pedestrian Deck

11am – 5pm     Town Festival

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12th Annual “We Love Ibaraki” Fureai Matsuri

Date: Saturday, April 6th, 2013 10:00am – 4:30pm

*Changed to April 7th if rain

Location: San-no-maru Government Building, Special Venue (Mito City)

 

Unable to be held due to the March 11th earthquake of 2011, this annual festival is finally making a return to Mito after 3 years! Come enjoy the beautiful San-no-maru Government Building, rehabilitated to its pre-earthquake glory, as well as local food specialties, a bazaar, experience corner, fureai corner, and more, all surrounded by beautiful spring cherry blossoms!

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Events

  • Fureai Walking (now accepting pre-event applications!)

A guided walk around San-no-maru that includes some of Mito’s historical sites and local shopping areas that can’t be missed!

 

  • Fureai Stamp Rally

Collect all the stamps around the festival area and you could receive a great prize!

 

  • Exciting Experience Events

Learn how to make things out of milk cartons, play old-fashioned games, and more!

 

Stage Events

Opening Ceremony

San-no-maru Elementary School Brass Band

Mito Kogyo High School Jazz Band, “BLUE BEGINNERS”

Oarai High School Marching Band, “BLUE-HAWKS”

And Many Other Various Local Idols!!

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117th Annual Mito Plum Festival

Location: Kairakuen Park, Kodokan Hall Park

Dates: Wednesday, February 20th – Sunday, March 31st 2013

 

“Spring in Mito starts with plum blossoms…”

The 117th Annual Mito Plum Festival will take place at Kairakuen Park and Kodokan Hall Park between February 20th and March 31st, 2013. Kairakuen Park boasts about 3,000 trees of 100 types of plums, and Kodokan Hall Park about 800 trees of 60 types of plums that will all be in bloom throughout the festival.

Besides being able to enjoy the wonderful plum blossoms, various events will take place nearly every Saturday and Sunday inside Kairakuen Park. Some events include koto performances, tea ceremonies, Japanese drum performances, and much much more! Spring is the season when Mito shines! You won’t want to miss out on all the beauty and fun that the festival has to offer!

List of Events

■ Wednesday, February 20th

○Plum Festival Opening – Memorial Present

Kairakuen Park East Gate, 10:30am~

 

■     Sunday, February 24th

○     Outdoor Koto Performance

Kariakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

○     Dance Performance

Tokiwa Shrine, 11:00am~12:00pm

 

■     Saturday, March 2nd

○     Mito, Kasama, Oarai Sightseeing PR

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

○     Doll Festival Display

Kairakuen Park, 10:30am~12:00pm

○     8th Annual Night Plum Festival

Kairakuen Park, 6:00pm~9:00pm

 

■     Sunday, March 3rd

○     Open-air Tea Ceremony

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

○     66th Annual Photography Event and Photo Contest

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

○     Mito Doll Display

Kairakuen Park, 11:00am~12:00pm

 

■     Saturday, March 9th

○     Open-air Tea Ceremony (run by high school students)

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

 

■     Sunday, March 10th

○     Open-air Tea Ceremony

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

 

■     Saturday, March 16th

○     Open-air Tea Ceremony (run by high school students)

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

 

■     Sunday, March 17th

○     Open-air Tea Ceremony

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

○     Bustle of the Plum Forest – Japanese Drums and Dance

Kairakuen Park, 11:00am and 1:00pm

○     Tsugaru Shamisen Performance

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

○     67th Annual Haiku (Japanese Poem) Contest

Ibaraki Prefectural Youth Hall, 10:00am~2:00pm

 

■     Saturday, March 23rd

○ Open-air Tea Ceremony (run by high school students)

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

 

■     Sunday, March 24th

○ Open-air Tea Ceremony

Kairakuen Park, 10:00am~3:00pm

 

■     Sunday, March 31st

○     Mito Komon Festival Japanese Drum Performance

Kairakuen Park, 11:00am and 1:00pm

mito plum festFor more information about Mito, the plum blossoms, the festival(last year’s info as well), or Kairakuen, you can check out related articles by clicking on the links^^

Art Tower Mito Starlight Fantasy

Dates: December 1st (Saturday) – January 13th (Sunday)

Illumination Time: 5:00pm – 9:00pm

Location: Art Tower Mito, Mito Station North Exit Square

 

Art Tower Mito Starlight Fantasy is a local residents’ handmade fantasy that begins with the hope “to give children a dream once a year”.

 

Art Tower Mito, the surrounding buildings and trees, as well as Mito Station North Exit’s clock tower and surroundings trees will be decorated with a countless amount of illumination lights. There will also be various fun events throughout the Fantasy!

 

【Events】

■     Light Up Gathering

Date: December 1st (Saturday) 4:50pm –

Location: Art Tower Mito

The illumination displays with be lit with a huge gathering of over 100 Santas!!

 

■     Christmas Concert

Date: December 2nd (Sunday)
Location: Art Tower Mito Concert Hall

Enjoy an energetic performance and chorus put on by elementary school students.

 

■     Countdown & Happy New Year

Dates: December 31st (Monday) – January 1st (Tuesday) 10:00pm –

Location: Art Tower Mito

Welcome the New Year with everyone while enjoying music and live performances!

 

■     Starlight Children’s Drawing Exhibit

Dates: February 19th (Tuesday) – March 1st (Friday)

Location: Art Tower Mito Entrance Hall

For more info about Mito, please see our homepage!

Mito Machinaka Festival “An Earthquake Reconstruction Event”

Date: October 28th, 2012

Time: 11:00am to 4:00pm

Location: Mito City Center, Main Shopping District

(Between Mito Central Post Office and Daiku-machi Intersection)

 

Mito Machinaka Festival will be held to celebrate 2012, a year of reconstruction and advancement. Mito City Center’s Main Shopping District will be turned into a pedestrian’s paradise where movies, plays, gourmet, live performances, markets, and all of Mito’s charm will be condensed in to one! Various events and performances will line the streets, such as: remote controlled race cars, wheel-chair basketball, movies (500 yen), art work markets, Halloween events, Machinaka theatre plays (1000 yen), as well as various cafes and vendors selling food, farm products, and many other goods! A guide book will also be available the day of the festival that has an entire list of all the events and vendors! This is sure to be a festival you can’t miss!

For more info about Mito, please see our homepage!