Spreading the charms of Japan to the world from Fukui




Venus ( Almanae of Fukui Commercial High Shool "JETS" ) Won a Prize for the First Time!


JETS and Grace JETS

The adult cheering squad, “Venus” which has been formed by alumnae of Fukui Commercial High School “JETS” (high school cheering squad) won the third prize in pom /college cheer squad / cheer dance / adult division at “The Finals of All Japan Cheer Dance Championship 2016” which was held on November 19th, 2016 at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium in Sendagaya, Tokyo. This was the first time for them to win a prize at the championship since they were established in 2014. Congratulations!


As people expected, JETS won first place in the high school division and they are going to the NCA/NDA All-Star National Championship in the USA next year.

This was the first time for me to see cheer performance live and I found it very interesting.
I had a great time watching many teams performing all day long.



At the end of the championship, the team which was surrounded by many cheer squads and won this year’s grand prize was Japan Women’s College of Physical Education.



Tasting three-star Wakasa beef that French three-star chef raves!



The other day, I subtitled “Taste of three stars! Wakasa beef” of Fukui Prefecture’s PR TV program, which we release on this site GEN also.
Just around that time, I was given that exact three-star Wakasa beef from an acquaintance.


The differences between common Wakasa beef and three-star Wakasa beef are
that the later contains a high amount, more than 55% of olein acid which is a good-tasting ingredient of meat, and it must be under the condition that they are grown in safe and secure raising environment such low-stress raising method.


Olein acid is one of unsaturated fatty acid which is said it is healthy fat that and is the main component of olive oil.
The more olein acid it contains, the more light and mellow the after taste will be even it is Japanese beef with much marbling.


The chef, M.Emmanuel Renaut of a three-star restaurant “Flocons de Sel” in France
expressed “Its texture and color made a very strong impression. The meat fiber is soft
and moist” about the three-star Wakasa beef.


Well, so I also tasted that three-star Wakasa beef.  
Since it was quite a large amount, I made “yakiniku bowl” for the first day and
“shabu-shabu” for the second day. It was really soft, and the balance of melty taste and
fat was very good. Also, I feel happy to be able to eat in relief because the fat is healthy.


Experience Making Japanese Sake / Fukui Prefecture / Rice Planting



The rice which has been planted and harvested by the participants of “Arigato Project 2016”

is now in the process of being made into the Sake of Arigato at Kokuryu brewery.


On May 3rd, 2016, the opening ceremony and rice planting of

“Arigato Project” of this year were conducted.


On that day, there were storm warning in Fukui City and a gale advisory in Ono City. In the strong wind the participants and staff of the projects planted each baby rice with their hands.

Everyone is looking forward to seeing the completed sake next year.


Have you ever experienced planting rice? I stepped into a rice field for the first time. It was very hard just to take one step that it took more than 20 seconds for me to walk one step.

Are there any sake breweries in your cities?
If you have a chance, how about experiencing making sake and/or sake brewery tour?




Tips for Disaster Preparedness / Slippers made of newspaper

This morning, as I was about to listen to the radio which I always listen to every morning, same announcements in Korean, Chinese and English were repeated over and over again. I didn’t know what was happening at that point. There was an earthquake occurred in Fukushima Prefecture (northeastern Japan) and the announcements were made for evacuation from the Tsunami that was occurred by the earthquake in Fukushima.

That reminded me about the slippers which is made of newspaper. I brought some old newspaper and tried making ones. I still remember how to make them.


Simply put, this is the order for making the slippers. When earthquakes occur, it is extremely dangerous to walk barefoot on floors with broken glasses. Even when there are no shoes around us, if there are newspapers, we can make these slippers and escape safely. The front parts of the slippers where the most pressure would be put onto has layers of 16 sheets of the newspaper. It’s just the newspaper, but it’s very strong so it makes such a big difference if you have newspaper or not when a disaster occurs.


I learned how to make these slippers during the escaping game called “Experiencing Disaster Preparedness, LIFE LINE” in which the participants played in a team unit at “Mori to Mizuumi no Rakuen” (Paradice of Forest and Lake) whose representative is a Japanese comedian Kuniaki Shimizu near Kawaguchi lake in Yamanashi Prefecture. (T.S)


Mori to Mizuumi no Rakuen (Paradice of Forest and Lake)


Report on “Special viewing of the hidden Buddhist statues associated with Great Priest Taicho” bus tour

I accompanied the bus tour “Special viewing of the hidden Buddhist statues associated with Great Priest Taicho” by Echizen Town’s Tourist Federation on November 6th.
Asahi District of Echizen Town, Fukui Prefecture has many temples, shrines and historic sites associated with Great Priest Taicho, where is a treasure house of Buddhist statues in the Heian and Kamakura Periods. On that day, I was able to see the hidden Buddhist statues especially which have survived from the battles in Period of Warring States and anti-Buddhism movement in the Meiji Period, and still enshrined by religious belief of local people.


*Great Priest Taicho was born in Fukui City in the Asuka Period(at the end of the seventh century). He was called a child prodigy. When he was eleven years old, he climbed Mt.Ochi, Otanji Temple following the revelation in his dream. After his ascetic practices and mortification, finally he achieved enlightenment of Buddhist teachings.
Afterwards, when he was 36 years old, he opened holy Mt. Hakusan.


Asahi Kannon Fukutsuji Temple Standing statue of wooden Senju Kannon Bosatsu
(Kamaura Period) Cultural Property designated by Fukui Prefecture
The Kannon has eleven-faced small Kannon on its head and forty-two hands.


I got a “goshuin” (stamp) at the Fukutsuji Temple.


Hiyoshi Shrine Seated statue of wooden Dainichi Nyorai(Heian Period)
Tangible Cultural Property
It is rare that there is a statue of Dainichi Nyorai in a shrine. It is said that originally
it was in the Fukutsuji Temple. When the temple opens its hidden Buddhist statues,
more than ten adults carry back the Nyorai to the Fukutsuji Temple.


Yasaka Shrine Wooden Juichimen Joshin statue (Heian Period)
Now it is on display at the exhibition “Buddhist statues of Fukui” at Fukui City History Museum.


There is a spring named “Life-prolonging water” in the precincts of the Yasaka Shrine
(100 greatest springs in Hokuriku Region) On July 14th, Gion Festival is held at the shrine
in the same manner as Yasaka Shrine in Kyoto.
I have heard that it has a nice old-style atmosphere.
I would like to see the festival.


Main hall of Mt. Ochi, Otanji Temple , which is one of the oldest temples in Hokuriku Region with a history of 1,300 years


It is said that this nine-story pagoda was the tomb of Great Priest Taicho.
National Cultural Property


The stairs to Joshoji Temple
Tanzan Ueno, the 13th Buddhist priest of the Joshoji Temple, was a leading cultural figure
in the late Edo Period.


Nagaya Gate in the precincts of the Joshoji Temple


As I went out of the Nagaya Gate, beautiful rural view of the village spread.


In the bus tour, there were visitors from other prefectures. A woman from Osaka who joined alone talked that she knew the tour on the internet and there were many unknowing Buddhist statues even in Osaka.


According to Mr.Fujikawa, curator of Fukui City History Museum, the power of Buddhist statues was too strong, so they close the doors and made the statues to hidden ones so that people would not be exposed to the too much power. It was like my eyes were opened for the first time hearing his talk.


The same bus tour is going to be conducted next year again.
How about joining to see hidden Buddhist statues in Fukui and to enjoy a day late in autumn? (H.S)