While people in Shibuya celebrated Halloween with arrests, tipping over trucks, and ensuring police crackdowns on future events, we at Breaker Japan decided to keep things PG and visit Kawasaki for Halloween. Before Shibuya became the congested party nightmare that it is today, the Kawasaki Halloween Parade was the de facto Halloween event in Japan. By no means does that mean that it has lost any of its charm or popularity since.
Over 2,500 participants marched the streets, boasting some of the spookiest, cutest, and most creative costumes that people had to offer. This year, the parade also included pride-themed categories to celebrate LBGTQ minorities in Japan. Not wanting to embarrass ourselves by being caught without costumes, our designer Luke and I donned Snorlax and Pikachu onesies and took to the streets around Kawasaki Station.
However, the parade wasn’t all there was to do and see. The weekend-long event also included costume contests, cult horror movie screenings — including appearances by the cast and crew of the indie film One Cut of The Dead that’s been making the rounds –as well as a packed out after party called “Dancing Pumpkin” featuring appearances by various Japanese DJs and performers.
To make things even more interesting for ourselves, Luke and I held a contest of our own with a Breaker Japan “Halloween Hunt.” The various challenges we faced included “hug a villain,” “cheer someone up,” and “reenact a meme.” You’ll have to watch the video at the top of this article to see the results.
The Kawasaki Halloween Parade was a lot of fun, and it makes a great family-friendly alternative to wild Shibuya, if that’s what you’re looking for. We stayed for most of the night, slugging it out with pesky poltergeist before dancing the night away with some of the lovely ladies that witnessed the disturbance.