The OC Japan fair

100 different craft and food vendors at OC Japan Fair

OC Japan Fair Photo: Jacob Castro

The OC Japan Fair, which was held Friday, Oct. 18 – Monday, Oct. 21, is an event that features tons of authentic Asian culture.

Between anime events, food trucks, food stands, video game competitions, live performances throughout the day, and countless vendors selling their merchandise, it is a great way to spend the day and do something new with family and friends.

The Japan Fair allows people to experience Japanese culture in a pure form while simultaneously providing vendors of many different sorts, an opportunity for more exposure, and a source of income.

If you are a fan of anime or cosplay, there is a restaurant inside where the employees are dressed in unique costumes, and sing songs, play games, and dance on stage where the guests join them. It is a spot that is always turning heads and has people stopping to check out whats going on.

Inside had a “smash” tournament going on where it was a $5 entree fee, and winner takes all. One of the employees who happened to be competing in the competition gave us more information on what the event was about.”

One of the most popular food vendors outside is a food stand called “Takoyaki.” After asking several people and vendors and judging based on the massive line outside their stand, it is the most sought after food spot at the fair.

Their main dish is takoyaki, which is a ball-shaped Japanese snack or appetizer made of a wheat flour-based batter. It is typically filled with minced or diced octopus, tempura pieces, pickled ginger, and green onion and brushed with takoyaki sauce, topped with green laver and shavings of dried bonito.

Another one of the food stands outside was selling grilled octopus on a stick as well as other authentic Japanese style cuisine.

The fair is staffed with volunteers that handle admission, clean up, and other various tasks to keep the fair running smoothly throughout the day. Many of them are trying to log volunteer hours for college admission. Some also volunteer just because they appreciate the event and get free admission.

Lastly, throughout the day, there are live performances that go on, on a stage located outside with all of the food stands and trucks. They have group performances, solo performances, dancing, singing, musical performances, and more.

Admission to the event is $8 plus a $7 parking fee. The tickets for the event can be bought at the entrance or online. Parking is paid for upon arrival, and they take cash or credit. Children six and under and over 65 get in for free.