This week, several mascots from Niigata were to be found in Ueno Station, Tokyo. They came to promote their home prefecture. I managed to see Black Bancho, a super-cool squid from Itoigawa City; Reruhi-San, the 270cm-tall skiing mascot based on Theodor Von-Lerch, an Austro-Hungarian major who brought the sport to Japan; Na-chan, a fireworks fairy from Nagaoka; and Burikatsu-kun, a half-man/half-fish from Sado Island.
Month: September 2017
Today, under the shadow of an incoming typhoon, thirty mascots from Saitama Prefecture came together in Kumagaya Sports Culture Park (in Kumagaya, Saitama). They came to celebrate their native prefecture, outside a football stadium where Saitama’s FC Omiya Ardija were playing Gamba Osaka. Ardija means squirrel in Spanish, and the team’s squirrel mascots were present. The match was a draw (2-2).
Each of the characters had a QR code on its person for you to scan on your phone, each of which revealed a word. After getting six words you could add them all together to make a question, which you then had to answer in order to enter a raffle to win prizes. The question was an obscure one—about an Omiya Arija striker’s goal scoring record. Luckily a beer stand barman helped me out with the answer and I could enter the raffle.
Eventually it began to rain and the yuruchara waddled away.
Here are a few of the mascots I met:
*Edit: One week later I received a package in the mail. I had won a prize in the raffle. A box full of Saitama mascot goodies!
On September 8th and 9th, several mascots from the Bitchu area of Okayama Prefecture paid a visit to the Tottori/Okayama Antenna Store in Shimbashi, Tokyo. They were there for the Okayama Bitchu Marche, promoting goods and produce from the area, and encouraging tourism.