Clubs and Groups in Nagoya

ByRay Proper
Apr 23, 2015

Clubs and Groups in Nagoya

If you are new to Nagoya you may find yourself wanting to get out and meet people. One of the hardest parts about living in a foreign country is dealing with isolation, and fi you are not careful you may end up watching season 3 of The Simpsons for the fifth time, wondering how you got there and whatever made you think you could live in Japan in the first place. The easiest way to beat those blues is to get involved. Whether you are aware of it or not, there is a vibrant foreign community out there with many opportunities to share hobbies or perform community service.

Chubu International Hiking Club

One of my favorites is the Chubu International Hiking Club, or CHIC. With over 300 members and regular events, this is probably the biggest and most active group in Nagoya, and as I said, one of my personal favorites. Events are nearly weekly, and include hikes at all skill levels, and many social events throughout the year. Recently, there has even been a lot of “women”s events,” where just the ladies get together and have fun. If you are interested in the outdoors and have weekends off this is the group for you. I try to make as many events as possible, but I work pretty much everyday so I do not get out as much as I would like to. One of my favorite hikes in Nagoya is Tsumago.

(From Japan-Guide.com) “The beautiful former post towns of Tsumago and Magome are connected with each other by an attractive walking trail that follows the old Nakasendo, a Edo Period highway from Kyoto to Edo.” …”the trail is 8 kilometers long” … “Partly nature trail, partly covered by original cobblestones and partly paved roads, the trail passes several small villages, waterfalls and historic structures.”

Information can be obtained from the group’s:

Facebook page

If you would like to participate in some community service projects around Nagoya, I have two suggestions!

Santa and Friends Nagoya

SFN brings together 254 orphans from 5 different orphanages and over 100 volunteers for full day events to celebrate Christmas annually. Christmas games, magicians, musicians, story-telling, and cookie decorating were just a few of the activities on offer. from 2011, SFN has begun interacting with the children throughout the year; organizing, assisting with, and carrying out a number of activities with the kids monthly (in smaller groups, usually at the individual orphanges) by providing summer barbeques, beach trips, English classes, sporting events, dancing, yoga, arts and crafts, ski trips, etc…

This is a great group of people whose membership leans more towards the Japanese side of the community. Besides the regular volunteer opportunities, they also host regular social events together. Well worth a look.

Information can be obtained from the group’s:

Website
Facebook page

Chubu Walkathon and Charity Festival

The Chubu Walkathon has been a tradition in the Nagoya Community for over 20 years, and last year’s event was the biggest and best so far! Last year, the Walkathon raised over 8 million yen to orphanages and local charities.

The main purpose is for the international community to join with Japanese friends and companies in raising money for local orphanages and charities. The Walkathon also promotes fitness through walking and is an all-day party to which all are invited.

If you are interested in participating in this event, whether as a volunteer or simply on the day of the event ( annually on a Sunday in May ) please become a fan on facebook or sign up to the email list on the website.

If social and charitable is not your thing, or it is but you need more more more (this would be me), you may consider becoming a part of the business community in Nagoya.

Information can be obtained from the group’s:

Website
Facebook page

American Chamber of Commerce in Japan

The Chubu Chapter has over 175 members from many different industries and activities. You do not have to be an American, and most of the membership here in Nagoya is not. I am involved in this group as the Chair of the Independent Business Committee, and my Vice-Chair is a Canadian and a hell of a guy. You also do not need to be involved in a “traditional” business activity. Many members are running English Schools, or simply teaching but are interested in finding a job in Japan or starting their own business here.

The mission of the ACCJ is to further develop commerce between the United States of America and Japan, promote the interests of U.S. companies and members, and improve the international business environment in Japan.

This group hosts many events ranging from educational to social, and boasts some of the best traditions in the foreign community; including the Walkathon, Champagne Ball, Meximas, and “Boozing on a Building,” or the annual beer garden event. If you are interested in getting involved in this group, the easiest way is to show up an event. Membership is a bit expensive, but worth it if you are motivated and willing to SEEK value from it, but you do not generally have to be a member to attend events in Nagoya.

Information can be obtained from the group’s:

Website
Facebook page

Tokai Japan Canada Society

Through periodic functions and events, the TJCS aims to create a greater sense of community among Canadians and to help foster increased relations between Canadians and Japanese, as well as other foreign nationals living in the Tokai region.

This group tends to be more social, but has a business aspect to it as well. They sponsor some great Nagoya traditions of their own, including an annual ski trip, camping trip, The Champagne Ball, and a great BBQ. For information about this group, please see the site.

Information can be obtained from the group’s:

Website
Facebook page

About the author

Ray Proper editor