Fresh fish aficionados have Fathers’ Day fest at Tomari Iyumachi
One of the more interesting festivals on Okinawa takes place every year on the weekend of Fathers’ Day at Tomari fishing port in Naha that usually is more of a realm of restaurant proprietors and fish mongers who head for the Tomari Iyumachi Fish Market every morning to search for the freshest fish on the island.
On this specific weekend the market invites dads, and families, to come check out the fish, and have some fun at the same time.
The Tomari Iyumachi Fathers’ Day Fish Fair is a two-day event on Jun. 18 and 19, running 10:00 ~ 18:00 on Saturday and 10:00 ~ 20:00 on Sunday. The market is located in Minatomachi, Naha City. With the exception of rides on Ferry “Orca”, admission to the weekend event is free.
The festival events start at 11:00 on Saturday with traditional opening ceremony. The fish market is open for business on both days and people buying products from the market worth ¥1,500 or more are entered into a lottery with prizes of fishery products, beer and awamori.
Tuna tasting and filleting demonstrations follow, after which the filleted yellowfin and big-eye tunas are auctioned off to the audience.
A cruise on Ferry “Orca” takes place 16:00 and costs ¥300.
On Sunday morning starting at 10:00, the fisherman community competes, who’s the fastest to fillet a tuna, and another yellowfin is again filleted in front of the audience at noon. A tasting event follows. Starting at 15:30, a giant bluefin tuna is cut to pieces, which are auctioned off afterwards.
Ferry Orca makes two cruises on Sunday, first leaving at 13:30 and the second at 17:00. Each cruise lasts about an hour and costs ¥300.
Southern Band Okinawa performs live at 18:40 to 19:40 p.m. and the event closes at 20:00.
As the legal parking at the fishing port is non-existent, using public transportation is strongly encouraged.