Member-supported news for Southern California
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Support for LAist comes from:

Rilakkuma fever spreads to Los Angeles

Move over Hello Kitty! There’s a new Japanese character taking the world by storm. He’s brown and white with a very chilled out look. His name is Rilakkuma.

(Audio of KPCC's Alex Cohen talking with Jamie Rivadeneira of JapanLA about the lovable bear.)

The name Rilakkuma is a combination of the Japanese way of saying "relax" and the word for bear. Rilakkuma is made by a stationery company called San-X. They describe him as "totally stress-free" and says "He is someone impossible to be disliked by others."

They say his personality is contagious: "You will be dragged into Rilakkuma's world and become easy and relaxed while watching everything he does."

Legend has it that the bear mysteriously appeared one day in the apartment of a young office worker named Kaoru. On its back is a zipper — implying something or someone else is inside the bear — but his true identity remains a secret.

What we do know is that Rilakkuma is making some special appearances in Los Angeles this weekend. There will be a Rilakkuma Weekend Pop-Up Shop and Party is at 7326 Melrose Avenue near JapanLA.

The Rilakkuma Weekend Pop-Up Party is both days this weekend next to JapanLA. The pop-up shop will be open on Saturday from 11 a.m.-11 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Free gifts with any San-X purchase, while supplies last and from 12 p.m.-3 p.m. The Crepe'n Around Truck will also be there.

On Saturday night, there will be a Rilakkuma Fan Party will be from 7 p.m.-11 p.m., featuring goodie bags for the first 100 party guests, a free Rilakkuma photobooth, and a DJ.

On Sunday, Sunday, August 15, the San-X pop-up shop will host King Kone Ice-Cream Truck and the Yatta Truck will serve sushi with free food for the first 50 people. A Rilakkuma Nail Salon with Rilakkuma Deco Nail Art will be open from 12 p.m.- 7 p.m. From 12:30-3:30 p.m. meet Rilakkuma at the free photobooth.