Gwangju Blog

What to do this Weekend: Shopping, Shows, and Orphans Edition

Photo courtesy of GFN.

Photo courtesy of GFN.

The Shop Till You Drop event is here! Join in at Daein Market on Nov. 22 from 2-5 P.M. for a day of shopping on GFN! Teams of 2 or 3 people get a 50,000 won voucher to shop for foods and goods and then race to the finish.  GFN will also provide food and beverages ofter the event for participants. You can still register your teams today by emailing the registration form to For more information and to download the registration form, check out the GFN event webpage. The Facebook event page has a lot of tips, clues, and event descriptions to help you in your shopping trip. Helpful hint: look at the bottom of Gwangju Blog articles from this week for clues to help you with your shopping spree.

Photo courtesy of GPP.

Photo courtesy of GPP.

The GPP Cabaret and Dessert Night show is happening Nov. 22 at 7 P.M.! It’s a night of torch singing and Broadway musical numbers at Concert 57 downtown, served with some sweet desserts. Tickets are 20,000 won and all proceeds will go towards expenses for producing the upcoming GPP performances of the play “Proof.” The suggested age for the Cabaret show is over 18 please. To check on ticket availability, contact Please notify the staff of any dietary requirements when booking. For more information, check out the Facebook event page or website.

Photo courtesy of Twisted Sister.

Photo courtesy of Twisted Sister.

Speakeasy downtown is holding an 80’s Glam Night Nov. 22 at 10 P.M., with proceeds to benefit the Adopt a Child for Christmas – Gwangju program. A make-up artist will be on hand to help you finish off your 80’s glam look, with part of the 5,000 won fee going to the Adopt a Child for Christmas charity. The event includes a costume contest, drink specials, prizes, and DJing by the one and only DJ Tavvy G from GFN, so go bang your head for some orphans and have an excellent time.

Zumba for a Cause – Gwangju is hosting a workout class to benefit the Adopt a Child for Christmas – Gwangju! Program on Nov. 23 at 12:30 P.M. at the GIC Center Downtown. The fee is 10,000 won, and is held by Cailin Noble, a certified Zumba instructor from the United States. Wear comfortable clothes and sneakers with grip. All money will be donated to Adopt-a-Child for Christmas. For more information check out the Facebook event page.

Photo courtesy of Zumba for a Cause.

Photo courtesy of Zumba for a Cause.

Plan for these upcoming events now!

There will be a small bakesale called The Orphan’s Bake Table in the foyer of the First Alleyway Restaurant on Nov. 29 from 11 A.M.-4:30 P.M. benefitting the Adopt a Child for Christmas – Gwangju program. The tables will be stocked with donated baked goods from generous folks all over Gwangju. If you want to be one of these Christmas angels and help donate your home-baked goodness, check out the Facebook event page for more information, or the bakesale volunteer’s page to sign up to donate.

Photo courtesy of The Orphan's Bake Table.

Photo courtesy of The Orphan’s Bake Table.

Alive Inside 6 will be held Nov. 29 at 7 P.M. at Club Nevermind near Daein Market. Here’s your chance to rock out to 6 different Korean heavy metal and punk rock bands, including Zen Alone, We Hate JH, BettyAss, Summer Never Comes, Sever the Ear, and Save Myself. There will be a merchandise booth so you can buy some cool band stuff, and a drink bar set up as well. Doors open at 6:30 P.M., and the cover charge is 10,000 presale and 15,000 at the door. The ticket reservation page is now open, so check out the Facebook event page, or go directly to the reservation page to buy your tickets. For more information you can contact the event organizer, Ji Hongbum at or 010-9128-6363.

Photo courtesy of Alive Inside 6.

Photo courtesy of Alive Inside 6.

Tickets are now on sale for the four different performances of the Gwangju Performance Project’s production of “Proof” that happen at the Gwangju Art Hall downtown Dec. 6-13. The production is a drama, and suggested for ages 14 and up. Korean translation will also be provided (한국어 통역 제공). To inquire about reserving tickets, send an email to For more information about performance times and dates, a list of cast members, ticket pricing and special package deals, check out the GPP website.

Photo courtesy of GPP.

Photo courtesy of GPP.


Shop Till You Drop Clue: Say Cheese: Photozone it!


News of the Week: November 20, 2014

Educational Offices in Gwangju and Jeollanamdo Prepare Operation Plans for High School Seniors

Educational offices in Gwangju and Jeollanamdo have each prepared operation plans for high school senior classes in the region.

With the completion of the annual College Scholastic Ability Test or Suneung Exam as of November 13th, the official academic schedule for high school senior is complete until graduation and schools often experience difficulties as students lose interests in studying and classes.

As part of an effort to run effective classes and provide educational lessons for the students, Gwangju and Jeollanamdo Education offices will introduce various interesting classes, such as humanities lectures and class trips to local museums and exhibitions.

In addition, educational authorities will seek greater cooperation with regional police agencies to prevent students from being involved in illegal acts, such as smoking and drinking.


Fine Dust Concentration Rate in Jeollanamdo Marks the Lowest in the Nation

Fine dust concentration rate in Jeollanamdo marked the lowest figures in the nation.

According to Jeollanamdo Research Institute of Public Health and Environment, the recently released ‘2013 Air Quality Assessment Report’ by the National Institute of Environmental Research finds that the average fine dust particles rate in Jeollanamdo was tallied at 38 micrograms per cubic meter of air.

A total of 15 air pollution monitoring stations are currently in operation in Jeollanamdo with figures for nitrogen dioxide marking the second lowest amount in the nation after Jeju Island at 0.015 ppm.

In 2013, an ozone alert for a concentration rate of O3, which is higher than tolerable standards, was issued for 4 days in Jeollanamdo, the fewest figures in nationwide cities and provinces.


Intra-city Buses in Gwangju May Be Increased by 430

The city of Gwangju has released its plan to reorganize its public transportation system if the construction of urban subway route 2 is halted after the scheduled public hearings.

With the cost of construction set at an annual average of 80 billion won, the construction plan of the Gwangju Metropolitan Subway Route no. 2 is currently under review for suspension.

If the public hearings and municipal meetings decide to halt the construction of subway route 2 that will link the new residential complexes in the Cheomdan and Suwan areas in Gwangsan-gu district with different districts in Gwangju, the city will reportedly operate 430 additional intra-city buses.

Suwan-dong in Gwangsan-gu district saw its population mark surpass 70,000, recording the largest figures for a dong-area in the nation and, along with the combined population of Cheomdan; the figure for the area is more than 380,000.

However, the two respective areas only benefit from 37 routes with one route used by average 10,400, whereas the Dong-gu district in Gwangju is equipped with 53 intra-city bus operation routes and it’s the average passengers on these lines is a mere 2,000.


Newly Married Couples to Shoot Wedding Photos in Jeollanamdo

Some 1,000 newly married Chinese couples are expected to shoot wedding photos in Jeollanamdo from next April through 2015 at famous scenic spots in the province, such as Boseong Green Team plantation, Suncheon Bay and Gyeongdo Island in Yeosu.

Jeollanamdo has announced that a total of 5 wedding company representatives from Shanghai have been visiting Jeollanamdo and Gwangju since last week to find suitable places for wedding photos.

The surge of newly married couples and plans for their photo shoots in Jeollanamdo comes as part of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the governor of Jeollanamdo, Lee Nak-yeon, who visited Shanghai last month, and Shanghai-located travel agencies.

Representatives from Shanghai wedding companies will make visits to 17 different tourist sites in the area, including Gwangju, Mokpo, Boseong, Suncheon Bay, Yeosu, Damyang and Hampyeong.


Today’s Hint: How much can you eat for 1000 won? Is it even possible? Daein’s got two amazing places to fill up!

Where to Eat Wednesday: Sweet Finger

When it comes to finding desserts I like, I’m often saddened to see just how limited my options are. Of course, I enjoy the occasional cheesecake that I may find at random coffee spots, but as someone who loves baking and experimentation in general, I find myself missing the more complex sweets that can’t be found at my local bakery. Though I’ve seen a few attempts here and there, a lot of these places never seem to survive the overly competitive cafe market. The only place I’ve seen pass that difficult test of time (for as long as I’ve been here, anyway) is Sweet Finger.


Though I have visited this particular cafe on multiple occasions, I only recently realized that I had never bothered to give it a proper review. To remedy this, I dragged a close friend to go on a dessert date with me. From what I could tell, she didn’t seem to mind.

Located right on Wedding Street, this oddly named cafe is an easy spot to miss, especially if you never bother looking up. My date for the night and I arrived on a Friday evening while our significant others were busy doing whatever it is they usually do. After climbing up the uneven wooden steps, we sat ourselves in the nice seating area by the large windows. Though this part of the cafe required us to remove our shoes, it was hard to complain while leaning against comfortable pillows.


Before we could get too settled in, we made our way to the front to place our orders. Naturally, we were immediately drawn to the pretty desserts that were on display. Ranging from tarts to cakes, we struggled to choose only two options. After much thought and compromise, we ultimately settled on a piece of Strawberry Tiramisu and a slice of Strudel Chocolate. Since we also needed some type of liquid to wash our less than healthy dinner down, we studied the expansive drink menu before finally ordering a Chocolate Chaud (which I assumed is similar to Hot Chocolate) and Royal Milk Tea.

Strawberry TiramisuStrudel Chocolate

As we just had to wait for the staff to make our drinks, it didn’t take long for us to receive our sweets. I first tried the Strawberry Tiramisu, which was reminiscent of a strawberry shortcake with a cream cheese twist. Instead of coffee, the moist slices of cake that sat in between layers of strawberries, whipped cream, and cream cheese had been soaked with some sort of strawberry sauce that made the dessert perfectly balanced without being too sweet or tart. The Strudel Chocolate, on the other hand, was not quite what its name said it would be. Though the cake was rich and did not lack in the chocolate department, I was a bit lost when it came to looking for the strudel part of the dessert.

As we ate our cakes, we sipped on our drinks that, despite their own sweetness, didn’t conflict too much with the flavors of our desserts. Though I didn’t really try the Chocolate Chaud my friend was drinking, I enjoyed my warm mug of Royal Milk Tea. If I could change anything, I only wish the tea flavor could have been a little stronger.

DrinksLemon Meringue Pie

Once we were done with the cakes we had initially ordered, we gave into what was left of our cravings and got a slice of Lemon Meringue Pie. Considering how this simple yet easy to mess up dessert is almost nonexistent in this country, I’ve always held this particular cafe in high regard for simply having this classic pie on its menu. As usual, the pie was a delightful balance of tart and sweet. The meringue was light and fluffy without having those weird egg white sweats that can often be found with such desserts.

Even after all this time, Sweet Finger still holds the top spot in my heart for desserts in Gwangju. Though not everything on their menu is a winner, most of what I had has been delicious. The only downside I’ve experienced is them running out of certain desserts for the day, especially in the evening hours. That being said, I have yet to try anything in their arsenal that I didn’t like.

Address: 광주 동구 광산동 86-9 (located on Wedding Street near Boca Beer)
Phone: 062-223-6058
Hours: 12:00PM to 11:00PM
Average Price Range: 5,300 for dessert, 4,800 to 6,000 for drinks


Today’s Hint:  Slice and dice, but don’t get the juice in your eyes cos its gonna sting!