Friday, 16 January 2015

Towada City Mascot Characters

Towada's Tourism Promotion Mascot Characters

Komatsu-Kun Towada Mascot Character
Name: Komatsu-kun 駒松くん
Gender: Male
Birthday: June 15, 2002
Likes: Horse Racing, Carrots
Dislikes: Insects (especially ones that eat pine trees)
Profile: Is good at various sports, including running marathons, sumo, skiing, etc. Has a veterinary license. Hobby is going to different onsen (hot springs) in Towada.

Kozakura-Chan Towada Mascot Character
Name: Kozakura-chan駒桜ちゃん
Gender: Female
Birthday: June 15, 2002
Likes: Cooking, Kanchogai Dori's Cherry Blossoms
Dislikes: Strong Winds (because they blow cherry blossoms off trees)
Profile: Loves bright complexioned skin, cute things, and sweets. Has a cooking license and is currently interested in recipes using komeko (rice flour). Hobby is karaoke. Best song is “Tsuki wa tottemo aoi kara” (Because the Moon is Very Blue).

Komatsu-kun and Kozakura-chan are twin horse characters. They were designated as official “image characters” for Towada City in November 2002, and became official “Special Residents” of Towada (a designation for non-human, animal/plant, and other fictional characters) on April 1, 2013. Their design and names reflect the history and image of Towada’s famous Kanchogai Dori.* Komatsu-kun’s name combines the kanji for horse (駒 koma) and pine tree (松 matsu) and Kozakura-chan’s names combines the kanji for horse (駒 koma) and cherry blossom tree (桜 sakura).

Kanchogai Dori is a thoroughfare lined with pine and cherry blossom trees. The combination of green pines and pink cherry blossoms in the spring is very striking. In 1958 it was selected for Yomiuri Weekly’s “Top 100 Scenic Places in Japan” and in 1986 it was designated by the Ministry of Construction as one of the “Top 100 Roads of Japan.

Towada is also known for horses. In the past, an Office of Army Horses was established in Towada for the raising of horses for the former Imperial Army. Kanchogai Dori was in fact built over the main gate road for the Office of Army Horses.

*Kanchogai Dori (官庁街通り) simply means “government office street;” Towada City Hall and other important city and prefectural offices/facilities are located along the street. It is also commonly known as “Komakaido” (駒街道) which means “horse street.”

The Official Portal of Towada City, “Towada-shi PR Characters” (Japanese)

Nansoboya Lake Towada Monk Towadako Mascot Character
Name: Nansoboya 南そボーヤ 
Gender: Male
Birthday: December 28
Likes:Takigyou” (滝行 ritual devotions under a waterfall); Pilgrimages to Japanese Holy Places; Vegetarian Food; Napping 
Dislikes: Bad/Evil People, Alcohol, Cigarettes, Ghosts 
Profile: A “lucky boy” who often finds money during walks. Wants to try Lake Towada’s himemasu (fish) but can’t while he is in training. Does well when complimented. Has strong legs so can tackle any mountain!

Nansoboya is a character based on an old Lake Towada folktale, “Nansobou no Densetsu” (南祖坊の伝説). While promoting Lake Towada tourism, he also serves as Lake Towada’s protector/god along with a “7-transformation dragon” (7変化する龍) that has become part of his soul and body. He became an official “Special Resident” of Towada (a designation for non-human, animal/plant, and other fictional characters) on November 9, 2013.

 (Picture) Kitaou Daily Tohoku, “Enter Towadako PR Character ‘Nansoboya’” (Japanese)

The Official Portal of Towada City, “Towada-shi PR Characters” (Japanese)

Towada's Local Produce Promotion Mascot Characters
(Facebook Page:

Towada Families Ninnin Garlic Cat Mascot Character
Name: Towada Ninnin 十和田にんにん
Gender: Male
Birthday: April 25
Likes: Playing Pranks
Dislikes: Humidity
Profile: Loves places where many people are gathered. Inquisitive and lively. Loves festivals.

Towada Families Nebacchi Nagaimo Chinese Yam Mascot Character
Name: Towada Nebacchi 十和田ねばっち Gender: Male Birthday: May 22
Likes: Eating
Dislikes: Bitter Things
Profile: Usually carefree but won't lose to anyone in sumo. Wants to be a sumo wrestler in the future.

Towada Families Gonbou Gobou Burdock Root Mascot Character
Name: Towada Gonbou 十和田ごんぼう
Gender: Male
Birthday: August 23 
Likes: Beer Snacks 
Dislikes: Bent Things
Profile: Chivalrous. Sometimes a troublemaker, sometimes just helping out when asked. Come to him with any problems and he'll be happy to give you advice.

Towada Families Negin Negi Spring Onion Mascot Character
Name: Towada Negin 十和田ねぎん
Gender: Female
Birthday: May 22
Likes: Beautiful Things, Herself
Dislikes: Persistent Men
Profile: Proud of her silk-like lustrous skin. Her only fault is a slight sharpness/pungency. Her hobbies are dance and beauty treatments.
“Towada Families” characters Ninnin, Nebacchi, Gonbou, and Negin are based on local Towada produce: Ninnin is a garlic cat; Nebacchi is nagaimo (Chinese yam); Gonbou is gobou (burdock root); and Negin is negi (spring onion). They were created in 2012 and became official “Special Residents” of Towada (a designation for non-human, animal/plant, and other fictional characters) on April 1, 2013. 

Powerful Japan Towada (Japanese)

Towada Families Facebook Page (Japanese):

The Official Portal of Towada City, “Towada-shi PR Characters” (Japanese)

(View/download this information as a PDF document here: Towada Mascot Characters.pdf)

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