A chance to see some Dekotora at the Yoshimi Fureai Festival in October 2023.
There is nothing particularly exciting about Yoshimi Total Sports Park on an average day. But a few times a year the park becomes a hub of excitement and festivities! This is one of the free viewing sites for Konosu Fireworks. It also has (used to have?) a great Narcissus and Rapeseed festival in spring, but it hasn’t been on in four years. The information in this post is for the “Fureai Festa” which is very similar to the old Narcisuss festival we attended frequently over the years.
Yoshimi Total Sports Park Fureai Festival
Yoshimi Total Sports is, as the names suggest, a sports park! It is not a typical park in appearance. It is located in flood plains, on land that can’t really be used for much else. The drive down to the park is long and windy. And yet there really is very little in the park. Except for some tennis courts and playing fields. There is a park management building, but it is actually on completely separate land, over an embankment on the West of the park. Presumably for safety as it is not uncommon for the park to be flooded after a large typhoon.
The festival is not particularly large and attracts mainly locals. Due to the large space of the park, it never feels very crowded. It has some really nice attractions that appeal to families. Such as a bouncing castle and peddle trains. Another draw of this festival is the chance to go up in a hot air balloon (moored) for just 1000 yen. In addition, there is a flea market on the day. Furthermore, in 2023, this festival is bound to interest all those who appreciate “dekotora“. There will be an exhibition of the ‘only in Japan’ decorated trucks at the festival. A photo below of Dekotora at a cherry blossom festival.
Event: Yoshimi Total Sports Park Interaction Festival 吉見総合運動公園 ふれあいフェスタ
Date: Sunday October 15th 2023
Time: from 9.30 am to 4 pm
Cost: there is no admission fee. The hot air balloon ride costs 1000 yen. The bouncing castle costs 100 yen for three minutes. The peddle train costs 100 yen for a ride.
Venue: Yoshimi Total Sports Park, 141 Imaizumi, Yoshimi, Hiki District, Saitama 355-0103. View on Google Maps.
A bus goes to within walking distance of the park from JR Takasaki line’s Konosu Station and Tobu Tojo line’s Higashimatsuyama Station. The bus stop you alight at is the same for both: Komyo bus stop. The park is about a twenty minute walk from that bus stop. By car, the nearest interchanges are the Kawajima Interchange and the Okegawa-Kitomoto interchange on the Ken-o expressway. Both are about 15 to 20 minutes from the site. Higashimatsuyama Interchange on the Kanetsu Expressway is about a 25 minute drive away.