The Hachinohe Area is bursting with more events, food, and adventures as autumn continues to settle. Enjoy the unusually warm weather for as long as it lasts by exploring this month’s recommended best things to eat, do, and see! Also, be on the lookout for a Visit Hachinohe announcement later in the month that will detail all the best places in the area to enjoy Momiji-gari, the Japanese tradition of autumn leaf viewing.
What to Eat: Soba (Buckwheat Noodles)
Towards the end of October, several soba (or buckwheat noodle) festivals will begin in the Hachinohe Area. The star feature of these festivals is shin-soba, which means ‘new soba’. Shin-soba is made with freshly harvested buckwheat flour straight from the fields. Soba noodles made with ‘new soba’ is said to have a richer fragrance and a sweeter, more flavorful taste.
Even if you can’t make it to one of the festivals celebrating these tasty noodles, there will be plenty of stores and restaurants providing their take on this seasonal specialty. In the Hachinohe Area, the town of Hashikami and the Nango area of Hachinohe City are particularly known for their soba noodles, so they are great places to begin your hunt for the best bowl of buckwheat noodles.
What to Do: Grill at the Beef & Garlic Festival
Meat lovers rejoice, as the much anticipated Takko Town Garlic & Beef Festival will be taking place on Oct. 5 & 6. Every year during this event, the sleepy town of Takko turns into a bustling center of celebration for all things garlic and beef. The festival will be host to a variety of shows, events, and musicians during the event, but the main thing that will everyone is looking forward to is grilling as much Takko Beef and Garlic as they can possibly stomach. Both products are locally produced and famous for their amazing flavor and high quality. Even before you see the venue for the event you will be able to smell the rich, enticing fragrance of grilled beef and roasted mouthwatering garlic.
Tickets for prepared sets of food for grilling can be purchased beforehand (at locations such as the YouTree Building in Hachinohe City), or you can simply show up and buy meat at the event. The festival will be held on Oct 5 & 6 from 10:00~15:00 at the Takko Ski Field (創遊館229スキーランド).
What to See: the Weird and Fascinating World of ‘Yopparai ni Ai wo’ in the Drinking Alleyways of Hachinohe City
Yopparai ni Ai wo (roughly translated as ‘love for the drunks’) is a month-long event that will be taking place in the yokocho or drinking alleyways of Hachinohe City during October. Although there will be several interesting components to the event (including a planetarium that will be set up in a different yokocho every Friday of the month to enjoy while you drink), one of the most exciting things on the schedule is the Only You Theatre.
The Only You Theatre will take place on Oct 4, 5, 11, & 12. During the event, different performance artists will dance, sing, and perform wild and entertaining acts through the alleyways for customers to enjoy as they drink and laugh their way through the evening. Skits, dances and bizarre performances will serve to embolden, entertain and invigorate onlookers while an intoxicating atmosphere permeates the small side streets that wind through downtown.
Simply by walking around and drinking at the izakaya in the yokocho during any of these days, you can join in on the almost carnival-like atmosphere that will envelop the night as art spills out into the streets. If you want a closer look, 1,500 yen tickets are available at the Hachinohe Portal Museum hacchi and include access to three shows and a discount drink ticket.
This off-beat event ranges from the wacky and weird to the stunningly captivating and is a great opportunity to peer into Hachinohe’s growing art culture.