Here is the schedule of college festivals this year. They haven't done well at spreading themselves over the month of October, as they did last year, but are bunched up at the beginning and end and dribbling into November!
For those who just arrived, these (gakuensai or bunkasai) are occasions when there are exhibits, performances, food booths, etc. at the college, and the community is invited to come and participate. It's a chance to see what the schools are doing. There is always a booklet with a schedule of events and exhibits (both outdoors and indoors); though it is in Japanese, there are occasionally pictures and maps that give you a general idea. Or ask at the reception desk for an English speaker. I don't have exact times, but usually midmorning to sunset. 11am is a good time to go and try to get some food before the lines get too long for the best ones.
Oct 7,8,9 (Sat-Mon) University of Tsukuba
Verrrry big. Covers the two campuses just north of and just south of Hiratsuka Dori. Don't plan on parking very close, or on riding your bike inside the campus.
Oct 8-9 (Sun-Mon) Tsukuba College of Technology - Hearing Division
On Higashi Odori, at the walk-bridge south of Hiratsuka Dori. Last year, a student made some delicious Okinawan doughnuts, and I also enjoyed their art/design exhibits and several student-made videos. This year their theme is "Virtual Reality."
Oct 28-29 (Sat-Sun) Tsukuba Women's University
Just south of Kita Odori, one traffic light east of Nishi Odori. This year, the big attraction is a lecture by Akihiro Miwa, a noted cross-dressing chanson singer and movie personality ("Black Lizard", 1968, as Akihiro Maruyama). His talk is entitled "Livin' Easy" (my translation of "Ikiyasui Ikikata"), but may already be fully subscribed.
Oct 28-29 (Sat-Sun) Tsukuba College of Technology - Sight Division
In Kasuga, just west of the University of Tsukuba, east of Nishi Odori. They are famous for inexpensive massages, but I liked the demonstrations of assistive technologies - a returnee student explained it to us in fluent English.
Nov 18-19 (Sat-Sun) University of Library and Information Science
Just south of Kita Odori, just east of Nishi Odori. Hmmm, will it be cold by then? Last year, as I recall, they had some interesting folk music performances and a book sale, among many other events.
The International Women's Network (IWN) is a group of women who enjoy chatting with people from all over the world. We hold a monthly potluck dinner where we exchange information about the local community while eating a variety of foods. No reservation is needed to attend the potluck. Just bring one dish of food and show up at the meeting. Newcomers are always welcome! Take advantage of this unique opportunity to enjoy the international city of Tsukuba with us!
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