Welcome to this week’s review of notable instances of public transit use and urban design, as well as discussion of place identity and culture, through anime currently broadcast or screening in Japan and simulcast internationally via the web. This review also documents seichijunrei (聖地巡礼 sacred site pilgrimage) and butaitanbou (舞台探訪 scene hunting)—on this website referred to collectively as anime pilgrimage—which are forms of place-based engagement induced by the use of real locations in show settings.
Media and General Interest
Chūnibyō character birthday
A fan-organized birthday celebration for Chūnibyō demo Koi ga Shitai! character Takanashi Rikka was held at former Kaigake Elementary School (旧鎌掛小学校) in Hino, Shiga Prefecture on June 12.
Video (with happy birthday singing!): tweet 1
— 塩谷珈琲@🍎きっと、何者にもなれる🍎 (@s_v_cof) June 12, 2022
Yuyuyu character birthday
Michi-no-eki Toyohama (道の駅とよはま) in Kan’onji, Kagawa Prefecture will mark the June 12 birthday of Yūki Yūna wa Yūsha de Aru character Miyoshi Karin with a display and special parfaits from June 11 to 19.
The 50th Komoro Citizens Festival “Dokansho” (第50回こもろ市民まつり「ドカンショ」) will be held for the first time in three years on August 6 in Komoro, Nagano Prefecture, covered previously. Recruitment for the Natsumachi Ren (なつまち連) is open from June 10 to August 4. The participation ticket can be purchased online for 2,500 JPY, which covers drinks, original goods, and insurance for the event.
Cafe Dream Tanabata
Preparations for Tanabata at Cafe Dream (珈琲屋ドリーム) in Nishinomiya, Hyōgo Prefecture are underway. The paper strips are ready. The bamboo branches usually go up around the end of June.
Super Cub rental
Rental shop Honda Dream Yamanashi (ホンダドリーム山梨) in Kōfu, Yamanashi Prefecture has experienced an increase in sales from fans of Super Cub using the namesake cycles to tour the area for seichijunrei. Media coverage: Yamanashi Nichinichi Shimbun (print)
Doctoral candidate and Nara Women’s University exchange student Guo Yibo (郭一博), who uses the reading Kaku Ichihaku when communicating in Japanese, is conducting a research survey of fans who travel to Nanto, Toyama Prefecture for True Tears seichijunrei and to visit the P.A. Works studio. Nanto City Creator Plaza (南砺市クリエイタープラザ), also known as Sakura Crea (桜クリエ), is assisting with data collection. Anyone visiting Nanto from June 1 to August 31 who would like to participate can take the survey in the atelier at Sakura Crea. The survey can be completed with paper form or by accessing an online version using a QR code.
Sakurashinmachi Sazae-san statue
Bronze statues of characters from Sazae-san are installed at multiple locations in Sakurashinmachi, Setagaya Ward, Tokyo Metropolis. The statue of Namihei is notorious for being vandalized, his single hair of vinyl coated wire disappearing multiple times since the installation in 2012. On June 3, the hair was found to be missing for the sixth time. Additionally, the three hairs on Wakame were pulled out for the first time. Repairs were made on June 8. Media coverage: Yorozū News
Yamanashi Yuru Camp activity
Sankei Shimbun published a concise overview of Yuru Camp fan engagement in Yamanashi Prefecture. It first reports on recent events at former Shimobe elementary and junior high schools in Minobu, covered previously here and here. It goes on to outline the growth of the series from the initial manga release in 2015 until present, noting how this has led to significant interest in seichijunrei to locations depicted in the series and camping in general. It notes that attendance at related events was initially comprised of anime fans and camping enthusiasts in their late teens and older, but has expanded to include younger viewers and their parents. Locals and observers are anticipating even more interest once Eiga Yuru Camp premieres in theaters this July. Media coverage: Sankei Shimbun
Minobu Yuru Camp promotion
Staff from the team that handles marketing and public relations for the Yuru Camp series has been “creating a campsite” at Michi-no-eki Shimobe (道の駅しもべ) in Minobu, Yamanashi Prefecture. The project is meant as a publicity stunt, the theme mirrors the premise of upcoming theatrical release Eiga Yuru Camp, but when complete it will be a real working campsite. Thus far, efforts have focused on trimming vegetation and cleanup of preexisting outdoor kitchen facilities. This is being done as part of broader renewal work at the roadside station, which does not appear as a setting in Yuru Camp, but is near locations that do. Media coverage: Hinata
Eiden Deaimon promotion
Eizan Electric Railway and Deaimon have been gradually ramping up a series of promotions that began April 16, shortly after the start of the anime adaptation broadcast. Earlier phases included character panels at Demachiyanagi Station and Kibuneguchi Station, and wrappings and headmarks on car 721, which were recently autographed by mangaka and creator of the series Asano Rin. The next phase will include a stamp rally, with postcards and a cotton purse offered as gifts for completion, and will run from June 18 to September 25. On the first day of the rally, a special event—Eiden x Deaimon Wagashi Festa (えいでん×であいもん 和菓子フェスタ)—will be held in the event space “Station Terrace” at Yase-Hieizanguchi Station from 11:00 to 15:00. The event will feature multiple local confectioners selling wagashi that appear in the work, as well as tables by Animate Kyoto and a local tea shop. News release: Eizan Electric Railway
Chiba Oregairu promotion
Japan Post and Yahari Ore no Seishun Rabukome wa Machigatteiru. will offer a set of stamps that feature character illustrations superimposed on photographs from real locations in Chiba City, Chiba Prefecture used in the series. The Oregairu stamps will be available for purchase at most post offices in Chiba and Ichihara beginning June 17, and available online beginning June 25. According to statements by Chiba mayor Kamiya Shun’ichi, Chiba City Tourism Promotion Division director Takeda Yoshihito, and reporting by TBS, which is one of the series’ rights holders, the stamp set was conceived as a means to attract foreign tourists and promote anime tourism to Chiba. A ceremony to present the stamps prior to launch was held June 7 at Chiba Municipal Inage High School (千葉市立稲毛高等学校) with current students and Watari Wataru, author of the light novel series and alumnus of the school, in attendance. Media coverage: TBS News Dig, Crunchyroll News*, Chiba Nippō. Photos: tweet 1, tweet 2
*Crunchyroll News misstates June 25 as the ending date of online sales. It is actually the start date. No ending date is specified.
Nikkō Puraore promotion
Nikkō, Tochigi Prefecture and Puraore! Pride of Orange will launch a new marketing promotion in the middle of June. The end cards of the TV episodes, which depict tourist locations in the city, will be distributed as postcards at six locations to visitors who can show that they have downloaded the game that is part of the media-mix project. The back of the postcards have a QR code that opens a web page introducing furusato nōzei (hometown tax) offerings. Media coverage: Kitakan Navi
Future Season Pilgrimage
Current Season Pilgrimage
@flyingbird1124 made a pilgrimage (updated post) to Noborito, Tama Ward and Higashi-Takane Forest Park in Shibokuhon-chō, Miyamae Ward (both Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture) for Kawaii dake ja Nai Shikimori-san Episode 8.