The chara appearance schedule for the Gotouchi Character Festival In Sumida 2017 in Sumida Ward, Tokyo in and around Tokyo Skytree Town, has been announced. The Pear Family will be there in full force; Funassyi will make two appearances on Sunday, May 28th, and Funagoro and Funyassyi will make two appearances each on Saturday, May 27th and Sunday.
This is the biggest gotouchi chara event in Tokyo, and always draws huge crowds. Besides the Pears big names such as Kumamon, Hikonyan and so on will be there too.
See an amazing photo from a past appearance by Funassyi here.
Here is Funassyi doing a promo for a jidaigeki (period drama) produced by San’in Cable Vision, a local TV company. Why is Funassyi doing a jidaigeki promo, you may ask? It’s because the subject is Yamanaka Yukimori, aka Yamanaka Shikanosuke (name in family name - given name order), a Warring States Period samurai who is one of Funassyis heroes, as he stated on the first Funanomics DVD. Here Funassyi says he likes Shinanosuke so much because of his indominatable spirit, and his unwavering loyalty to his lord. He also manages an irreverent quip at the production company, saying he didn’t have high hopes for a drama “produced by a company in the boonies” but that he was impressed at how good and authentic it was. Shikanosuke is played by Naoki of EXILE and J Soul Brothers III, so it could be interesting. Now to find out if/where it will play in the Tokyo area…
A gotouchi chara cruise?! Unfortunately it sold out in the blink of an eye, but as far as I know this is the first such cruise. It departs from the port of Oarai in Ibaraki prefecture on July 6th, going up to Tomakomai in Hokkaido. The cruise includes two night’s stay on the boat plus one night’s stay in a hotel in Tomakomai, where participants can enjoy the Friend Festival In Tomakomai gotouchi chara event on the 8th and 9th. Cruise participants also get special seating for the Funassyi Stage at the festival. Funassyi will not be on board, but the two little Pears will be, as well as Friend of the Pear Family Kappa no Kotaro (the official chara in a sense of Rapiit, one of the makers of Funassyi merchandise) as well as Tomachoppu, the official chara of the city of Tomakomai, and for some reason Omoigawa Yui, a chara that represents a train in Koyama, Tochigi prefecture - which is no where near any place the ship passes by. (Maybe the train she represents is connected to the company that operates the cruise? I don’t really know.) It should be pretty hard work for Funagoro and Funyassyi, but I hope they won’t get seasick at least.
The festival itself will have 80 chara present, including Funassyi, as well as Hikonyan, Iisa King, Melon Kuma and some other well known mascots.
Brochure for the cruise (PDF)
Golden Week (or “Gonzales Wireless Week” as Funassyi calls it) in Japan is when a string of national holidays coincide, making it one of the biggest holiday seasons on the calendar. It starts on April 29th and ends on May 6th. During Golden Week, when you shop at any of the Funassyiland stores including the limited period one in Omiya as well as the 5th Anniversary exhibit at the Funabashi Seibu department store, for every 1,000 yen purchased you get one of the collectible glittery Funassyi cards pictured above. The kick is, every store and venue has their own unique version. The ones shown above top to bottom, the cards are for the Funabashi flagship store/ the Umeda, Osaka store; the Nagoya store; the Harajuku, Tokyo store; the web store; the Omiya limited-period store; and finally the 5th Anniversay exhibit at Funabashi Seibu. It would be so much fun to try to go to all of them….
Source: Funassyiland web site
The newest addition to the Funacolle collectible Funassyi plushies is the Statue of Libernassyi*, with the Pear holding up a beacon Pear welcoming all weary souls to the happy world of Pear Fairies.
*not the actual name of the toy
Yet another limited-period Funassyiland will be opening, this time in the city of Saitama in Saitama prefecture. Here are the details from the Funassyiland site:
- Place: Omiya Loft store on the 8th floor of the Sogo Department Store, JR Omiya station west entrance (Google Maps)
- Period: April 29 - May 21
- Character appearances: Funyassyi on May 2; Kapal on May 13; Funagoro on May 20 (times TBA)
Each time there is a limited period Funassyiland, the makers of Funassyi merchandise come up with some items that have a connection to the location - such as the adorable lavender colored figurines created for the recent Sapporo, Hokkaido Funassyiland. (Hokkaido has many lavender fields.) This time they have created a series of sliced bread Funassyi items of various sizes, ranging from a cushion to a tiny phone or tablet screen cleaner, as pictured above. Now, my aunt lives in Omiya, but as far as I know Omiya is not especially renowned for its bread. Or maybe it is and I never knew. In any case they are very cute. More understandable are the Soka Senbei (rice crackers) printed with Funassyi’s image, since Soka is also in Saitama prefecture and its rice crackers are famous.