Check out some of the amazing services being auctioned off next week!

This is an on-going list that will be updated as we get more donations! All professional pictures and ads done courtesy of Samantha McCalip in Mutsu and reflect actual reality.


Samantha McClap - Mutsu

Samantha McCalip – Mutsu

Shimokita Tour!  with Samantha McCalip, Mutsu Hey, you! Yes, you! The ALT lookin’ rather bored, wantin’ something to do for a weekend. Why so glum, fella? What’s that? You want to get out of your home-away-from-hometown and get to a new side of Aomori-ken you haven’t seen before? Well that’s terrific, buster! Because boy, have I got a deal for you. How about you and three of your friends come up to Mutsu for a spell? Choose your favorite must-see sights!

Do you want to check out Osorezan, to peek into the mouth of Hell? Would you rather feed some voluptuous ponies that run wild in Shiriyazaki, while taking tourist photos with a beautiful lighthouse? Maybe you’re wanting to sample some misokaiyaki at an izakaya with your pals? Well, friend, look no further.

Service Details: If you buy this package you and three of your friends will receive:

  • Up to 4 people
  • One free night stay and my swanky pad.
  • Futons not needed, at my place (free Wifi included)
  • A complimentary breakfast the next morning (request anything of the chef, and you’ll get my best interpretation of it)
  • A tour to as many or as little tourist spots in the Shimokita peninsula as your travelin’ heart desires for one full Saturday or Sunday.
  • A free drink (each) on the house at a restaurant the night before you stay over. You can choose where to go and what to eat, or you can play Russian Roulette with favorite foods of the local ALTs.
  • Like, five hugs.

This could be you and your pals! So come one, come all, bid on this prize; Mutsu and you are a thing, you just don’t know it yet, so let me get y’all together!

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Kuroishi Tour! (with some photography service included!) with Essa Wiseman, Kuroishi City A full half a year under her belt, this little fireball will show you the ins and outs of one of the loveliest cities in Aomori-Ken, Kuroishi city! Breweries, bath-houses, and beautiful parks, you know you wanna get on this!

Service details:

  • This is a customizable package! We can document your trip with some photography, like Ansel Adams because, hey, the time to put together nengajou is NOW.
  • Tour of Kuroishi to some of our most famous places, and others that you may have been curious to see.
  • The friendliest happiest tour guide in all of Kuroishi city.
  • You will need to get transportation to Kuroishi city in order to enjoy this experience.
  • Here’s just some of what you might find yourself doing:
-Make a kokeshi doll
-Eat famous Kuroishi yakisoba
-Tour a street that is designated as one of the 100 greatest streets in Japan
-Drink unlimited water from the mountains of Hakkoda
-Tour a 200 year old sake distillery
-Archaeological digs/castle ruins
-Recommended stay at Aoni Onsen (about $100 cost/person/night, but REALLY worth it).
-Transportation to Kuroishi required
-Local transportation available for up to 2; larger groups will have to use alternate forms of locomotion
It’s awesome
You can choose to do this during your Kuroishi Tour.
Make your mama proud(er). Support E of A! And you can do it while getting some pretty great pics to mail to your mom. Let’s get you looking your finest and shoot some film photography! Choose between a roll of color film and B&W film. Then choose between a standard camera, a Mini-Diana, and a Fujifilm Instax. Naturally, we’ll use some iPhone tech to give everyone some instant gratification. Flexible location and date…although I hear Siberan swans the size of unsettlingly large ponies are coming to a rice field near Kuroishi, and they’re coming SOON.

Photography examples:

essaphotos5essaphotos4 essaphotos3 essaphotos2 essaphotos1

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Gonohe Tour! with Mina Kim, Gonohe – Didn’t get enough time to explore the vast world of Gonohe during the International Music Festival this summer? Don’t fret!! Mina will take you all over the expansive lands of Gonohe town! Get read to have a crazy day/night/whatever with the amazing Mina!If you like the Japanese experience of sitting at a tiny bar, talking to everyone around, Japanese or american while eating yakitori and drinking beers, you’ll love yacchan’s as well. A local drinking spot for the Gonohe ALTs and many other residents of Gonohe!

Service details:

  • 3-4 people to crash at my house, male/female, all are invited! I have an extra futon and a small couch, but I ask that you bring the rest! (pillows, blankets, the extra 1 or 2 futon)
  • Breakfast will be served in the morning!
  • Christ’s grave- although it is not technically Gonohe, it is close enough! The famous Shingo grave is less than 20 mins away and if you would like to see where Jesus and his brother is laid to rest, come check it out!
  • Makiba onsen- A great onsen, has a nice outdoor onsen as well. A must-go while in Gonohe
  • Sasaki restaurant- All you can eat yakiniku, and especially the famous Gonohe baniku (horse meat) ! It’s dirt cheap and delicious, and you’ll love it if you are a big fan of yakiniku
  • You need to GET TO Gonohe to enjoy this experience!
  • I will drive you everywhere from Gonohe onward!

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Hirosaki Tour! with Roxy Najera, Hirosaki – We know everyone wants a little slice of the good ol Hirosaki City! With a young population of people in their 20’s from all the universities, it’s no WONDER this town has a rich music and dance culture! So many little cafes, bars, restaurants, a beautiful castle park, and the BEST American style hamburger joint Aomori has to offer! Come on a 4th Saturday of the month and enjoy clubbing!

Service details:

  • Bienvenidos: 1-2 night stay for you and two of your friends comfortably and four if you want it a little more cozy.
  • Provecho: In the mood for something not Japanese how about some Mexican food? Let me indulge you in some of my favorite Mexican delicacies
  • Salud: A great way to follow some Mexican food is some tequila, La Hacienda Colonial is a small hole in the wall tequila bar.  This place is truly a little piece of Mexico; wall to wall décor of all things Mexican, they have Los Tigres del Norte playing along with some mariachi music, and of course a wide variety of tequila. To top it all off, the owner is very welcoming especially if you can teach him some Spanish words he would be over filled with joy.
  • Una merienda: Not much of a drinker that is okay maybe one of the many café shops will go down smooth as well.  How about some all you can eat waffles with that coffee? Mother Leaf is a restaurant I frequent a little too often and has a lunch special which offers unlimited waffles. Unlimited waffles!
  • Andando por las calles: Lets walk off all those waffles and stroll down Dotemachi Street that houses many cafes and boutiques. Just a short walk from Dotemachi we have Hirosaki Park home of the Hirosaki Castle. Also, another place of interest would be the Saishou-in Temple with a beautiful pagoda inside.
  • Provecho: Hungry and still not in the mood for Japanese food, well I have the perfect little dinner-like feel restaurant that will fulfill your longing for a nice juicy hamburger maybe a milk shake to accompany it. Pepe Kitchen is only a short five minute walk from my apartment and offers much more than just hamburgers.
  • My awesome supervisor went ahead and said that included, depending when you visit, you are invited to her family house. (Yes, she is super sweet). She invites you and your guests to view her family’s set of Japanese dolls that have been in the Oyama family more than 300 years. While viewing these dolls enjoy some homemade green tea in a very traditional Japanese house courtesy of her family.
  • Mi casa es tu casa: Although, I have only been in Hirosaki little over four months, I would like to share with you what is slowly becoming “home.”
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Kyle Buck, Shichinohe

Hiking / Backpacking personal guide! with Kyle Buck, Shichinohe  Mountain guide, specifically hiking and backpacking. I worked as a ranger for the largest outdoor youth camp in the world, Philmont, and I also have some experience hiking here in Japan. Want to climb Fuji? I would be happy to get you ready and join you on your way up. ( or something like that) But, that might be more of a summer thing for most people.

  • Service details:
    • I will help you pack and get the essentials ready for any type of hike you’re looking for!
    • Teach/ help you with the basics of backpacking and hiking.
    • I will join you on your way up whatever mountain or trail you want!
    • We can backpack all day to some of the beautiful places in Aomori-ken


Tori Sharpe, Hirosaki

Tori Sharpe, Hirosaki

Château Sharpe Snowboard Weekend! with Tori & Kyle Sharpe in Hirosaki City Are you an absolute beginner? Intermediate ready to take on some new terrain? A powder junkie trying to ride the park? Whatever you are, Tori is ready and willing to teach you some new stuff at Ajigasawa’s Naqua Shirakami ski resort! Going into her 8th full season of snowboarding, she can (hopefully) help you feel comfortable and confident strapped to a snowboard! Not a certified instructor, but I definitely know how to teach newbies.

Service details:


  • For Beginners: I’ll teach you the basics of equipment and mountain environment, balancing, stopping, getting up from a fall, making your first turns, the joy and of sliding on snow! How important leg day is 😉
  • For Intermediate: Depending on what you want to do, I’ll help with linking turns, rhythm/size/ speed change in turning. cruising faster down the hill, gaining more control over your body. Interested in learning park? I will show you how to approach, ride, and land after hitting very small jumps and/or boxes.
  • For Advanced: I’ll take you to all the awesome TREE RUNS that I’ve discovered on the hill! OR ride with you everywhere you wanna go, including the park and your black diamonds.
  • 3 free onsen tickets at Naqua’s hotel onsen (must be used before 4PM).
  • 3 free coffee/hot cocoa tickets in the Mountain Cafe.
  • We may have some equipment to borrow, talk to us beforehand.


  • 1-2 night stay at Château Sharpe for up to 3 people! All bedding is included (one bed, two futons, some pillows/blankets and stuff).
  • A ride up to the mountain and back from the Château for 2 days. Cost: a Diet Coke (for Kyle) snowboarding Saturday and Sunday.
  • Complimentary breakfast: Your choice of cheesy omelet or crepes (I can add protein to the crepes if you like), and coffee or tea.
  • Night out on the town! Different stuff’s happening on different weekends. If you come on the 4th Saturday of the month, I can take you out clubbing. In February there’s the Winter Festival. Otherwise I can show you the oh so famous “Robbin’s Nest” a nice pub style bar with tons of different alcohol and live music, an onsen or something, or if you prefer low-key we have 2 terabytes of movies/TV shows on our hard drive.

kyle promo

Skiing / Snowboarding lessons! with Kyle Buck, Shichinohe – Skiing for 20 years this season and boarding for about 9. I can teach beginner and intermediate skiing and beginner boarding (possibly intermediate), and I am down for doing some double black diamond runs too! I can be your teacher and your co-pilot on the snow!

Service details:

  • Meet you on the mountain on the Nambu side!
  • I will teach you the basics of skiing or snowboarding (your choice!)
  • You will leave knowing how to: Stop, turn, balance, and have your general mobility on the slopes.
  • You get one of the most enthusiastic and awesome teachers you could hope for!
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Dan Liberatori, Hiranai

Guitar Lessons! with Dan Liberatori in Hiranai With ten years of experience teaching music to just about all levels of students, this is your TIME!! You are never too old to learn something NEW!

Service details:

  • 2 x1hr lessons (I would recommend that they are spaced at least two weeks apart).
  • winning bidder would have to come to Hiranai for the lessons at a time of our mutual availability.
  • winning bidder must own (or have regular access to) a guitar before lessons can begin.
  • acoustic, electric, classical, all types of guitar are welcome.

It’s time to get your groove on… Or learn how to make others get their groove on.



Learn to Knit! with Lyndsey Bohlener, Tsugaru City – Ever wonder how all those awesome people knit all those awesome things? Don’t want to leave your house in the winter blizzard? Going to a brass band concert and need something to do to kill the time? Well this is for you!

Service details:

  • Learn the basics of knitting for an absolute newbie!
  • If you already know the basics, I can teach you a few cool new methods for knitting, including fancy stitch patterns and how to make a hat.
  • Location is totally negotiable! Let’s talk about it and we’ll figure out the easiest thing for both of us!
  • You get a really nice day with a really nice lady;)

Made to order Knit hat! with Lyndsey Bohlender, Tsugaru City – No one’s ears should ever be cold in this winter wonderland! Too cool for the popular knit hats you see everyone wearing? Or just can’t bring yourself to pay for a swanky 8,000 yen beanie? Perrrrfect.

Service details:

  • Made to order knit hat.
  • Any style, color or material! (ie wool, cotton, bamboo etc)
  • You like it and I’ll make it!
  • limitations: does not involve more than 2 colors, and the hat will be ready in the 1st or 2nd week of January.

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The Fanciest Manicure of your Life with Theresa James, Hirosaki City- 

Service details:

  • What’s included: ・A trés swanky manicure  and aftercare and tips on how to keep your hands and nails looking good!
  • Choose from any design in the photo – you can mix and match as many as you like!

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Snowboard & Skiing, and a night at the New Zealand Room with Ryan & Chiaki in Aomori City– Hang out with one of Aomori City’s RRs, he and his girlfriend Chiaki can show you Aomori City, and let you stay in their New Zealand Room for the night too! And that’s not all! Join them and go snowboard/ skiing!! You can bring a friend to accompany you and trust me, it’ll be nothing but good times with these New Zealanders!

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Curling Lessons:  with Eric Larsen, Patrick Gorman, and Dan Libertori in Aomori City

Service Details: 

  • Join these kids in a curling session! Meet ‘em in Aomori City’s curling rinks and join one of their practices! These cool kids will walk you through and show you how to play; the rest of the team will be good examples of what they teach you! You’ll definitely learn a thing or two about this famous Canadian sport.

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