Riverside Lunar Festival [2012]

Riverside held their 2nd Annual Asian-Pacific Lunar New Year Festival on Saturday, 28 January! My friend KrisZ was running a Cosplay Gathering as well as the Lunar Fest’s Cosplay Fashion Show. Of course, I got there so late that I missed both, but I did get to check out a bit of the event and to hang out with some new friends!

I’d never been to Riverside before, so it was quite fun to check out its very beautiful downtown area. Here is a statue in front of the Riverside Metropolitan Museum.

This is the view from Mission Inn Ave. looking towards Lemon St. They shut down the street and set up all sorts of booths. It was a pretty good turnout!

Cosplayers sighted! Vocaloid? I think one of them’s Kaito… :3a

Here is Larissa Lapin cosplaying Anabu (Another Blood) from Demonbane! She’s super cute!

Since Riverside is home to a mission, it’s not terribly surprising that there are many churches in the area. This Universalist Unitarian Church is right across the street from First Congregational Church. And directly across Lemon St. is…

… foodings! Yum…

… of course, I didn’t eat anything, lol.

There was a performance stage at Lime St., but the Cosplay Fashion Show was actually held in front of the library.

You can barely make out the alien balloon in the corner of this photo, but I thought it was pretty funny!

Steampunk × Touhou. xD By now, you may be wondering what cosplayers have to do with a lunar festival, since the Japanese have celebrated the Gregorian new year since the late 1800s. According to KrisZ, he was approached by the person running Lunar Fest to put together a cosplay fashion show in order to celebrate all Asian cultures.

Once I found KrisZ, I tagged along with him on a photoshoot he had planned. It was a great way to meet some folks and also to explore the area!

Yuna and Lenne, both Songstresses from Final Fantasy X-2.

Here we are back by the Museum. The sky was relatively clear because it was very windy.

KrisZ’s photoshoot was in progress, so I snuck in a few shots of my own! xD

People were just kind of hanging out, as it was a pretty chill and low-key day.

Santa also wanted to check out Lunar Fest!

I’m not sure if Gandhi had any connection to Riverside, which is why I was surprised to see this statue of him.

KrisZ’s shoot continues. Downtown Riverside is quite lovely.

This does not look like it will end well. o_O Everyone was just kind of goofing around at this point.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to sample the cupcakes. :<

The Mission Inn is gorgeous! I wish I’d had some time to check it out but it was rapidly getting dark and we were heading back for the fireworks.

This sundial by the Chinese Pavilion/Pagoda was rather impressive. In addition to telling the time, it had months and zodiac signs, too!

Trying out some nighttime photography as we waited.

I found it rather odd that the Pagoda is not open to the public except during special events. :3a

We hung out for a little bit waiting for the fireworks, but since it was so windy we thought they were canceled. :< This was made up for by a trip to Denny's. xD

My first trip out to Riverside, and it was great to hang out with friends and to do a little exploring. Hopefully I’ll be able to take in some of the actual events next time! ^^;

See more photos in my album here:

2012 01 28 Sat: Riverside Lunar Festival

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