News & Events


Jun03

Senri Oe Preview Performance & CD Signing

2017 at 01:16 am by admin | Comments Off

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Head to Tomodachi at the Mall of America on Tuesday, June 6th for an exclusive pop-up performance and CD signing with Japanese jazz sensation and former J-Pop star, Senri Oe!

As a special mini-preview leading up to his major concert, Harukaze 2017, on Wednesday at Hamline University, Senri Oe will provide a more intimate experience for fans at Tomodachi. Copies of his latest album “Answer July” will be on hand for people to buy and have signed by the artist himself.

This performance is free and open to the public.

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ABOUT SENRI OE

In 2008, Senri Oe shelved his highly successful 25-year career as a Japanese pop star and actor to move to New York City in pursuit of a childhood dream—becoming a jazz musician. As a lyricist, composer, and arranger since 1983, Oe built a robust Japanese popular music (J-Pop) career, releasing 45 singles and nearly 20 albums, winning the Japanese Gold Disc and FNS Pop Music Awards, and hosting a talk show on Japan’s national broadcasting network. Enrolling at The New School at age 47, Oe studied under Junior Mance, Aaron Goldberg and Toru Dodo. Since graduating in 2012, Oe has worked tirelessly to embed himself in New York’s jazz ecosystem. Having established his own record label, PND Records and Music Publishing, Oe plays monthly at Tomi Jazz New York, is a regular pianist for Morning Musuko, a 17-piece big band specializing in Japanese popular music (J-pop), and has now released three albums.

For details on the Hamline performance the following day, visit: http://www.mn-japan.org/2017/02/harukaze-2017-senri-oe-in-saint-paul/

Senri Oe website: http://peaceneverdie.com/

Apr26

DESIGNER TOY AWARDS FINALIST!

2017 at 10:36 pm by admin | Comments Off

We are thrilled to be a Best Toy Store finalist at The 7th Annual The Designer Toy Awards! We’re honored to be selected out of 100’s of entries by the nomination committee as standing out in 2016. We were selected under the Public Voting section so our final candidacy depends on our supporters. If you love Tomodachi, please support us by voting — there’s a quick and easy registration process, but it only takes a minute or two. The only rules are: one vote per user and you have to register to vote.

VOTE HERE : https://www.designertoyawards.com/categories/21

Voting closes Wednesday, May 3rd at 12 (noon). We would appreciate all of your support and supporting Designer Toy Art by voting!

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Feb08

Valentine Special Offer

2017 at 02:55 am by admin | Comments Off

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We’re excited to share that we’ve been named one of Minnesota Monthly’s “8 Places to Shop for Unique Valentine’s Day Gifts” this year.

Now through Feb. 14th, we’re offering a BUY 3 GET 1 FREE deal! Buy three Japanese sweets and and receive one of equal or lesser value for free. Offer available at both our MOA and Rosedale locations.

While you’re here, don’t forget to pick up some adorable stationery to write your sweetheart a totally cute love note to go with their treats!

Special thanks to MNMO Style editor Jahna Peloquin, Kate Iverson and Niki Tombaga.

Oct24

Pokemon: The First Movie returns to theaters

2016 at 07:15 pm by admin | Comments Off

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In celebration of the 20th anniversary of the classic Nintendo franchise, the original 1998 Pokémon film, “Pokémon: The First Movie”, will be making a grand return to theaters nationwide! The re-screening of the popular children’s movie will take place at 200 select Cinemark locations across the United States, and will take place from October 29th to November 1st. Both “Pokémon: The First Movie” and the animated short “Pikachu’s Vacation” will air, similarly to the movie’s original release nearly two decades ago. The movie re-release comes as a part of a year-long celebration of the Pokémon franchise, including the release of the original Pokémon Red, Blue, and Yellow games on the Nintendo 3DS system, along with the Pokémon Go smartphone app and the upcoming release of the brand-new Pokémon Sun and Moon 3DS games in November. Make sure to keep an eye out for participating Cinemark locations this Halloween to take part in this nostalgic experience!

Oct20

Nintendo Switch console unveiled

2016 at 05:26 pm by admin | Comments Off

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Months of speculation and rumors surrounding Nintendo’s newest console, code-named the NX, will finally come to an end today, thanks to the official announcement of the Nintendo Switch! The console acts like a hybrid of Nintendo’s home console line and handheld series, allowing users to play the Switch both at home and on the go! This is accomplished thanks to a variety of innovative features, like a docking stand that the Switch plugs into at home to play on your TV, along with a separate slide-out tablet to play the console in a handheld format. The controller, titled the Joy-Con, is also widely modular, allowing the controller to be split apart from its at-home configuration and attached to the portable tablet to create a handheld screen. The console unveil also showed off a number of new games, including the upcoming Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Splatoon, on top of a brand new Mario title! With a release date scheduled for 2017, next year is sure to be huge for Nintendo fans across the world! Check out the new Nintendo Switch in the debut video below!

Oct13

Studio Ghibli artist Michiyo Yasuda passes away

2016 at 04:27 pm by admin | Comments Off

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After decades of working on Studio Ghibli’s many films, the unfortunate news has come to light that prolific Ghibli artist Michiyo Yasuda has passed away earlier this month. Yasuda, who was 77 when she passed on October 5th, originally worked at Toei Doga in 1958, and became one of Studio Ghibli’s most influential color artists from the studio’s inception. Her work includes iconic Ghibli films like Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, Grave of the Fireflies, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, Ponyo, and most recently The Wind Rises, along with other animated pieces like the Hols: Prince of the Sun and the Future Boy Conan series.

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In total, Yasuda’s career at Ghibli spans 40 years and many films, and she as surely left her mark on Ghibi and the animated medium as a whole with her gorgeous color design and artwork. As Yasuda herself said in a 2009 interview, “Color has a meaning, and it makes the film more easily understood. Colors and pictures can enhance what the situation is on screen.” Her passing will be dearly missed by fans from all over the world, and her integral role in making Ghibli films what they are will not soon be forgotten.

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Oct11

KAWS' "Clean Slate" statue arrives in Dallas

2016 at 07:39 pm by admin | Comments Off

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Visitors to the NorthPark Center in Dallas, Texas will now be greeted with a piece of KAWS artwork! KAWS’ “Clean Slate” statue, which was originally displayed at exhibits in Harbour City, Hong Kong and LA NAVE in Ibiza, will remain as a permanent display in the NorthPark Center. The giant statue of KAWS’ iconic Companion character is the newest addition to the NorthPark’s collection of art, featuring works from Andy Warhol, Frank Stella, Joel Shapiro, Jim Dine, Jonathan Borofsky, James Rosenquist, Antony Gormley, Barry Flanagan and Beverly Pepper. “Clean Slate” was officially unveiled on October 10th, and will be followed by a new KAWS exhibit titled “Where the End Starts”, which will be displayed at the Modern Art Museum of Fort worth nearby! All of these new and upcoming KAWS pieces make Dallas the place to be for fans of KAWS and of pop art in general!

Oct06

Sanrio's Pompompurin set to decorate McDonald's food

2016 at 06:25 pm by admin | Comments Off

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After winning this year’s Sanrio Character Ranking, adorable dog character Pompompurin is now set to appear on an undisclosed McDonald’s menu item this October! This fun activity comes as a collaboration between McDonald’s and Sanrio, and a teaser site is currently letting fans guess as to which of the 5 potential Pompompurin-themed items will appear on the menu on October 14th. The choices range from sensible to outlandish, and include items like a standard McDonald’s hamburger with Pompompurin’s visage emblazoned upon the bun and a custard McFlurry, to wacky items like crème caramel-flavored chicken nuggets and even a specialty burger featuring a caramel flan patty inside! Which item will make it to Japanese McDonalds later this month? You can check the official website, seen here, to see and vote on your choices, with the results being published on October 7th!

Oct05

Stay at a Mario-themed room in Portugal

2016 at 04:24 pm by admin | Comments Off

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Tourists in Lisbon, Portugal are now being offered the chance to stay at a fanciful Mario-themed hotel room, thanks to the efforts of one dedicated fan! The room was put together by programmer and homeowner André Farinha, who wanted to share his love for Nintendo and its classic icon with tourists and locals alike. The room is decked to the brim with a variety of Nintendo merchandise and memorabilia, including built-in gaming stations for Nintendo’s 3DS and WiiU consoles! Also included in the room are a variety of the collectible Amiibo mini-figures, murals, posters, wallpapers, and even a decorated bathroom! Though the room cost Farinha over $11,000 to furnish and customize, this fun getaway can be rented on Airbnb for the low cost of just under $40 a night!

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Sep29

Sanrio supports 2016 earthquake victims

2016 at 05:13 pm by admin | Comments Off

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In the wake of the ongoing relief efforts of the April 2016 earthquakes that hit the Kumamoto and Oita prefectures in Japan, Sanrio has uploaded a video in support of those suffering from the lingering effects of the natural disaster. Titled “One Action for One Love”, the video is part of an effort to spread awareness as well as to help in relief; Sanrio themselves have pledged to donate one yen for every view the video has to helping out victims! On top of that, Sanrio’s website for One Action for One Love is also offering other ways for visitors to help out, ranging from taking donations and letting repeat customers use their Sanrio Friendship Club points to donate to the effort. Spread the word about this new initiative, and help out by watching the video below!

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