American Base Festivals On Okinawa

U.S. Military Sponsored Festivals Open to the Public

By Michael Flemming    - 3 min read

Friendship festivals held on American military bases each year feature headline entertainment acts like Alien Ant Farm, Hinder, Jessie James, Gary Sinese and the Lt Dan Band, One Republic, JET, David Archuleta, and Hailey Reinhart. Ten festivals are held on bases across Okinawa and are open to the public free of charge. The widely popular festivals feature music, entertainment, food and games similar to off-base festivals but with distinct American fare and flair.

Access to the base is limited to the area of the festival. Always bring identification; if not an American or Japanese citizen or tourist bring information showing where you are residing at. Bags are usually inspected prior to entry. Coolers and glass containers are not allowed. Bring sun block and yen or U.S. dollars for food and games.

-America Fest at Kadena Air Base in Okinawa City is usually held the first weekend in July each year from 12:00 ~ 21:00; this event is restricted to U.S. military personnel on the first day but is open to Japanese citizens on the second day. The event is cancelled for 2013.

-Hansen Fest at Camp Hansen in Kin Town will be held on August 17 and 18, 2013 from 14:00 ~ 22:00. Typhoon dates will be August 24 and 25. One Republic is the headlining musical act for this year's Hansen Fest.

-Camp Kinser Festival at Camp Kinser in Urasoe City will be held on October 19 and 20, 2013 from 14:00 ~ 22:00 each day. Typhoon dates will be October 26 and 27 if necessary. Headlining musical and entertainment acts have not been announced.

-Torii Beach Rocktoberfest at Torii Station in Yomitan Village is usually held on the first weekend in October from 14:00 ~ 22:00. Dates and entertainment have not been announced for 2013.

-Camp Courtney Christmas Fest in Uruma City will be held on December 7 and 8, 2013 from 14:00 ~ 22:00 each day. This Christmas themed festival features Santa Clause and Santa’s village.

-Camp Foster Festival in Chatan is usually held the second weekend in April and again in on the second weekend in October from 14:00 ~ 22:00. The event was just held April 13 and 14, 2013. Entertainment and musical acts for the next Camp Foster Festival have not been announced.

-White Beach Festival at Naval Station White Beach in Uruma City is usually held the third Sunday in April from 11:00 ~ 20:00. The event was just held April 18, 2013.

-Okuma Beach Fest at Okuma Recreation Facility in Kunigami Village is usually held the last Friday and Saturday of April from 12:00 ~ 22:00. The event was held April 26 and 27, 2013.

-Schwab Fest at Camp Schwab in Nago City is usually held the third or fourth weekend in May from 14:00 ~ 22:00. The event was just held on May 25 and 26, 2013.

-Flightline Fair at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Ginowan City is usually held the first weekend in June from 14:00 ~ 22:00. The event was just held on June 8 and 9, 2013.

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Michael Flemming

Michael Flemming @michael.flemming

I'm a wandererer in Okinawa turning over every stone I can find. I write, photograph, and blog about my favorite finds here in Japan's southernmost prefecture. Find more of my rants and finding on my travel blog.

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Michael Flemming Author 5 years ago
The Camp Courtney Christmas Festival will be Dec 7th and 8th from 14:00 ~ 20:00 each day; listed as open to U.S. DOD I.D. Card Holders and local nationals.
Michael Flemming Author 5 years ago
Snmash Mouth will be performing at the Kinser Fest on Camp Kinser in Urasoe City, Okinawa on Saturday 19 October 2013. The performance is free of charge for visitors.
Michael Flemming Author 5 years ago
Rocktoberfest 2013 takes place this year 11-13 October 2013 at Torii Beach on Torii Station in Yomitan Village. There will be 27 bands performing over the weekend coming from Okinawa, Japan, Ireland, Canada, and Spain. My own favorite JET will be the final act on Sunday night. Octoberfest at Torii Beach begins at 16:00 and ends at about 22:00. Visitors must have pre-existing base access or be signed in by someone who does.
Michael Flemming Author 6 years ago
I've seen tourists or non local Japanese (main land tourists) get admitted into all of the festivals. The Okuma Fest is the biggest and best example of this. The JAL Okuma resort next door empties out on day two as the tourists, predominately main land Japanese on vacation, walk over to the military Okiuma Resort to enjoy entertainment, American beer, and mix with Americans.
Muneerah Bee 6 years ago
I had the impression tourists are not allowed to these festivals as they are on military bases.