Wow! Look at all the fun events happening on Okinawa!
Editor's note: There's some great events coming up, so get off base and check them out! (This was updated Aug. 18)
EXPLORE THE CAVE IN THE SOUTHERN ISLAND: Through Sept. 30; July 14-Aug.31 Mon.-Fri. at 10 and 11 a.m.; Sat., Sun., holidays at 10, 11 a.m., & 2 p.m.; Sept. 1-30, Mon-Fri at 10 a.m.; Sat., Sun., holidays at 10 a.m. & 1 p.m.; Caving in the Cave Gyoku Sendo; 3,000 yen fees and 1,000 yen for caving gear rental; Children below 4th grade must be accompanied by a guardian; 3,000 yen for a married couple on July, Aug., Sept. 22; reservation required; parking available; 098-949-7421; www.gyokusendo.co.jp/okinawaworld/okinawacave/exploration.html.
NIGHT ZOO SATUR-ZOO NIGHT: Okinawa Zoo & Museum will be open until 9 p.m. every Saturday from late July and throughout summer break; 098-933-4190; admissions: adults-500 yen, junior high-high school students-200 yen, K-6-100 yen, 3 years old and younger-free; 098-933-4190; www.okzm.jp/.
SOUTHERN ISLAND STAR FESTIVAL 2018: Aug. 11-19; A week full of stargazing events on Ishigaki Island; free admission; reservations required for some events; 098-082-1535; www.star-festival.amebaownd.com/.
ONNA-SON RESORT FES TANCHA IN RIZZAN: Aug. 17-26, 4-10 p.m., enjoy summer nights at Rizzan-Sea-Park Hotel in Onna-son; 098-862-7580; www.onnafes.com/.
KUNIGAMISON FESTIVAL: Aug. 18-19; stage live performances, Ha-Ri- (dragon boat race); fireworks, etc.; at Kunigami Middle School; free admission; 098-041-2101. * Event details will be finalized in early July.
ZAMAMI ISLAND FESTIVAL: Aug. 18, 6-9 p.m.; Eisa, Ryukyu dance, Hawaiian Hula dance, band performances, fireworks, various food stands at the Zamami Port Terminal Square; free admission; 098-896-4321; www.vill.zamami.okinawa.jp/.
NISHIME ALL-ISLAND SUMO & EISA: Aug. 19; Sumo and Eisa at the Nshime Bull Ring; free admission; 098-896-7010; www.kanko-kumejima.com/.
HATERUMA ISLAND MUSHA-MA: Aug. 24; island’s biggest event that prays for the bumper year and the islanders’ safety; costume parade, dance; at the Hateruma Public Hall; 098-082-5445; www.painusima.com/.
KUME ISLAND KYUBON EISA: Aug. 24-25; On Okinawa, obon is commemorated according to the lunar calendar; Eisa is the Buddhist incantation using chanting, drumbeating, and dancing; Eisa can be seen throughout the island for these days; 098-896-7010; www.kanko-kumejima.com.
HESHIKIYA EISA EVENING: Aug. 25-26, 6 p.m.; at Uragahama Park; 098-978-2231.
24TH TAKASHIHO ODORI EISA PARADISE: Aug. 26, 3-6 p.m.; at Yomitan-son Takashiho Odori (Prefectural Road #6); 098-958-6494.
Kadena Eisa Festival (Shinmachi Street): Aug. 26, 6:20 - 10 p.m., 098-956-2810.
NISHIME WHOLE ISLAND SUMO, NISHIME EISA: Aug. 21-Sept. 2; at the old Nishime Bullring; free admission; 098-896-7010; www.kanko-kumejima.com/.
ORION BEER FEST 2018: Sept. 1-2, 3:30-9 p.m.; enjoy factory-fresh beer and live music performance at Goza Athletic Park Sub Ground; free admission; no parking lot available; 098-877-4511.
13TH URUMA CITY EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 8-9, 4-9 p.m., eve Friday: Sept. 7, 6:50-9 p.m.; at Uruma City Multi-purpose Park Athletics Field; 098-923-7612; www.city.uruma.lg.jp.e.up.hp.transer.com/culture/1249/9113/8746.
22ND GINOWAN CITY YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 8-9, 5-9 p.m.; at Ginowan City Square; 098-893-4431.
AUGUST'S DANCE: Sept. 17-19, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Tarama Island harvest festival that takes place Aug. 8-10 in the Lunar calendar; several dances with over 400 years of history; at Ntabaru Ugan and Pitumata Ugan; free admisssion; parking available; 098-079-2260; www.vill.tarama.okinawa.jp/, www.taramajima.net/odori.php.
TUBARA-MA: Sept. 22, 6:50-9:30 p.m.; Music competition of traditional folk song-Turaba-ma; takes place on Lunar calendar's Aug. 13; at Shinei Park (Ishigaki City Public Hall in case of rain); free admission; no parking lots available; 098-082-1515.
HARVEST FESTIVAL: Sept. 22, 3-7 p.m., 23, 8 a.m.-10 p.m.; March from Minami Daito-son Village Office to Daito Jingu with Mikoshi and Dashi; On the 23rd, dedicatory sumo and other entertainment; free admission; 098-022-2037; www.vill.minamidaito.okinawa.jp/event.html.
33RD KITANAKAGUSUKU SHIOSAI FESTIVAL & 2018 Young Man EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 22-23, 2-9 p.m.; at Nakagusuku-son Shiosai Park; free parking lot available; 098-935-2233; www.kitapo.jp.e.abl.hp.transer.com/events/event/kitanaka_fes2018/.
DAITOGU FESTIVAL: Sept. 22, 3 p.m., 23, 9 a.m.; Biggest event on Kita Daito Island; on the 22nd, Mikoshi parade and fireworks; on the 23rd, harvest prayer ceremony and dedicatory sumo, and other entertaining performances; at Daitogu Shrine; free admission; parking available up to 50 spots; 098-023-4001; www.vill.kitadaito.okinawa.jp/top_html.html.
29TH NAGO CITY YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Sept. 23, 5-9 p.m.; at 21st Century Forest Park; 098-053-5429.
KANEGUSUKU SHISHIMAI: Sept. 24; Event with over 200 years of history to exorcize and pray for bumper crops; in Kanegusuku Village on Kume Island; free admission; no parking available; 098-896-7010; www.kanko-kumejima.com/.
CHIBANA USUDE-KU: Sept. 24, 3-5 p.m.; Event with over 300 years of history-women wearing traditional crafts, "Chibana Hanaori" dance to exorcize and pray for bumper crops; at Chibana Kamiya and Chibana Public Hall second floor; free admission; parking available up to 6 spots; 098-937-4516.
ITOMAN GIANT TUG-OF-WAR: Sept. 24, 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m., Parade starts at 2 p.m.; at between Itoman Rotary (Itoman Elementary School) and Hakugindo; parking lots available; 098-840-8135; www.city.itoman.lg.jp/kankou-navi/.
KUME ISLAND HAWAIIAN FESTIVAL 2018: Sept. 28-29, 7-9 p.m.; at Cypress Resort Kumejima on the 28th and Resort Hotel Kume Island on the 29th; 098-985-3260.
KAJIMAYA: Sept. 29, 7 p.m.; Performance Show by powerful Okinawan elders; Advance tickets-2,000 yen for adults, 2,500 yen at the door; 1,000 yen for children for both advance and at the door; at Music Town Otoichiba; 098-932-1949; www.facebook.com/Kajimaya97/.