Taking an evening stroll to admire some of the city’s incredible illuminations is a great way to spend the holiday season in Tokyo. But if you really want to get into the Christmas spirit, look no further than the Santa Run.
The Santa Run is a charity event that originally started in Osaka in 2009 and is returning to Tokyo after a three-year hiatus. This year it takes place on December 3 at Komazawa Olympic Park with the choice between a 4.3km run or a 2km walk along the jogging course.
The ¥3,300 fee (¥2,200 for university students, ¥1,100 for junior high school students and under) gets you a handmade Santa costume that you can change into for the run. If you’d rather bring your own Santa get up, you can receive a badge instead. Best of all, a portion of the proceeds go towards gifts for hospitalised children in Japan and children who need medical care overseas.
Make sure to stick around for the afterparty in the park. There will be live talks and performances on stage featuring singer-songwriter and Santa Run ambassador Maki Ohguro, and appearances from other Japanese celebrities. There will also be booths with fun activities set up around the park.
You can purchase tickets in advance from the website (Japanese only).
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