SINGAPORE - Fans of Pokemon and Japanese culture can look forward to two days of great food, fun and entertaining performances at the Japan Summer Festival next month.
The second edition of the festival will see the National Stadium transformed into a gigantic festival ground with more than 100 booths featuring Japanese food, games and merchandise on Sept 7-8.
The public will be able to immerse themselves in traditional and popular Japanese culture, through activities such as the Bon-Odori dance, musical stage performances, the Pokemon carnival and Pikachu dance parade, as well as try on a yukata, which is a casual summer kimono for both genders.
Foodies can look forward to savouring tasty Japanese dishes, such as wagyu rice burgers, deep-fried cheese mochi, as well as favourites like okonomiyaki and yakisoba.
Yu Jiarong, founder of parenting blog BYKidO, was among the 45,000 people who attended last year's edition.
The 36-year-old, who was with his family of four then, said: "We have been to many carnivals and fairs but this one is quite different. We really enjoyed the Japanese dance in the middle of the stadium and one game in particular (Senbonbiki), which involves choosing a string to cut and getting the prize that drops down.
"We were able to sit in the stands while enjoying our food and it was a very different experience even though we had sat there to watch football matches previously."
This time, he is determined not to miss out on certain activities.
"Last year, we wanted to rent Yukata sets but there wasn't a size which fit my daughter, who was too young," he said. "Hopefully, they will have one that fits her this year and we can take a family photo together."
The Japan Summer Festival is organised in collaboration with the Japanese Association of Singapore and aims to harness better cultural understanding between both the Japanese and local communities.
The festival is also held in conjunction with the quarterly Sports Hub Community Play Day.
In celebration of Singapore's Bicentennial year, the event will introduce the Heritage Challenge, comprising games popular in yesteryear such as Capteh, Five Stones, Jump Rope, Giant Snake & Ladders, as well as the nostalgia-infused Ohana Games. Participants can form a team to take on the Heritage Challenge or try the individual activities at the try-out stations.
Games aside, fitness enthusiasts can work out under the dome of the National Stadium during the J-Pop Fitness Dance Jam session, while families can get a taste of kart racing in "eco-friendly" pedal go-karts.
Visitors can also sign up for the free annual Community Fitness Assessment, where participants are given the opportunity to keep track of their fitness progress and goals.
For tickets and information, visit https://www.sportshub.com.sg/japansummerfest
Correction note: An earlier version of the article said the festival will be held from Sept 8 to 9. It should be Sept 7 to 8.