Shiga History May–August 2018

Chronology of Shiga Prefecture’s major news headlines for May–August 2018 (according to the year, month, day, and time posted at GMT).

Originally posted on Twitter under Shiga Headlines by Philbert Ono. Twitter posts are limited to 280 English characters including spaces and links (shortened by Twitter). Dates and times below are based on GMT, not Japan time.

Lake Biwa Rowing Song CD single by ~Lefa~

2018-05-02 20:04:00 Excellent cheese cake at Cafe & Bar Tonarimachi Parlor (#隣町パーラー) next to JR Maibara Station (West exit). Also great for breakfast or a nightcap for guests staying at Toyoko Inn next door. Nice interior design with lots of wood. 
2018-05-09 00:16:03 On May 7, 2018, a 1st grade girl in Minakuchi, Koka playing in a roadside gutter apparently got caught in the gushing rainwater and sadly died tens of meters downstream.
2018-05-09 00:16:14 Bicycle sharing has come to Otsu on April 27 via OFO JAPAN + Machizukuri Otsu. 400 yellow bicycles can be rented & dropped off at 66 locations in Otsu. Download the app to locate & unlock the bicycle & pay only ¥100 per 30 min. or ¥500 per day. https://t.co/tsA5dXEjsb
2018-05-09 00:16:36 Omi-cha tea plants in Koka are suffering from severe cold and dryness this season (寒干害) causing some leaves to wither into a red color. Tea farmers fear that this year’s harvest will be lower than usual. (Photo taken in late March in Tsuchiyama.) 
2018-05-11 17:29:53 ~Lefa~ ニューCDシングル「琵琶湖周航の歌」が英語版Lake Biwa Rowing Songも6番まで収録されました。本日より琵琶湖周航の歌資料館等で販売中。Nagahama-based duo ~Lefa~ has released a new CD single that includes Lake Biwa Rowing Song in English (6 verses). https://t.co/SHDCi28a7L https://t.co/RX3ccdJWgx
2018-05-14 20:13:04 See Lake Biwa at night from the International Space Station. https://t.co/Y8lMkNpQEZ
2018-05-19 16:07:19 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch in Otsu: Yoshibue reed flute player Kondo Yumiko started off a series of mini-concerts inside the supermarket at noon. #近藤ゆみ子 #ヨシ笛 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-19 16:07:46 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch in Otsu: Taisho-goto mini-concert by Shiki-no-Kai. #四季の会 #大正琴 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-19 16:08:21 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch in Otsu: Yoshibue reed flute player Kondo Yumiko. #近藤ゆみ子 #ヨシ笛 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-19 16:08:45 Wha?? A violin player playing in the middle of a supermarket?? Yes, at Heiwado Wani Branch for the 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19. #沖本みなみ #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-19 16:09:31 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch: Talented violin player (since age 4) Okimoto Minami played classic pieces effortlessly. #沖本みなみ #ヴァイオリン #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-19 16:15:04 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch in Otsu: Outside the west entrance, rock band members from high schools in Otsu and Kusatsu performed. #堅田高校 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 https://t.co/wfyjZxZrPg
2018-05-19 16:18:02 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch: Kada Yukiko sings to reed flutes played by Kondo Yumiko and the duo Hot Line. #近藤ゆみ子 #ヨシ笛 #ほっとらいん#第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-19 16:22:05 2nd Biwako Music Festival pre-event on May 19 at Heiwado Wani Branch: Led by Kada Yukiko and Kitagawa Akihiro, pre-event finale was singing Biwako Shuko no Uta with all the high school students. #北川陽大 #嘉田由紀子 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭https://t.co/do0g0GvV7C
2018-05-20 14:04:17 @Bajir No, there’s no violin version of the Heiwado song, but it was playing in the background, along with announcements to get a HOP card. https://t.co/S1RMwxKvPn
2018-05-21 03:10:19 Perfect weather for the sunrise kayak tour held by BSC Watersports Center in Otsu on May 20 as a pre-event of the 2nd Biwako Music Festival. Photo by BSC. #第2回びわ湖音楽祭https://t.co/3XEiop709I
2018-05-21 03:11:33 Kicking off the 2nd Biwako Music Festival on May 20, 2018 at Otsu City Wani Culture Center was a series of lobby concerts during 12:15 pm–1:30 pm. Violinist Okimoto Minami performed first for a standing room-only crowd. #沖本みなみ #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-21 03:12:29 Stones Sax Quartet performed at the lobby mini-concert of the 2nd Biwako Music Festival on May 20, 2018 at Otsu City Wani Culture Center. Four different types of sax together. Fantastic! #ストーンズサックスカルテット #陣内亜紀子 #本田千鈴 #亀井友恵 #西川静 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-21 03:13:01 Percussion trio named Schlegel performed on drums and marimba. Mesmerizing!

#シュレーゲル #中谷満 #竹内唯 #中井萌 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 

2018-05-21 15:07:58 First half of the 2nd Biwako Music Festival on May 20, 2018 at Otsu City Wani Culture Center started at 2 pm with the Shiga Junior High School band from Otsu. #志賀中学校吹奏楽部 #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-21 15:10:37 At the 2nd Biwako Music Festival on May 20, 2018 at Otsu City Wani Culture Center, the Konan Dance Workshop had a large group of dancers with an intellectual disability give a truly moving performance. Utterly wonderful. #湖南ダンスワークショップ #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-21 15:38:21 Finale at the 2nd Biwako Music Festival on May 20, 2018 at Otsu City Wani Culture Center. Many of the high school performers had to leave early to study for a test the next day. #第2回びわ湖音楽祭 
2018-05-21 15:40:37 At the 2nd Biwako Music Festival on May 20, 2018 at Otsu City Wani Culture Center, Nagahama-based duo #〜Lefa〜 performed Lake Biwa Rowing Song in English with Okimoto Minami on violin. #沖本みなみ #第2回びわ湖音楽祭https://t.co/lKVl4sExSi
2018-05-21 15:43:39 Nagahama-based duo #〜Lefa〜 and violinist Okimoto Minami #沖本みなみ pose with their new CD single featuring both Biwako Shuko no Uta (in Japanese) and Lake Biwa Rowing Song (in English). 
2018-05-22 10:38:12 第2回びわ湖音楽祭の新聞記事:

毎日新聞 https://t.co/ecGhPmgT2x

産経新聞 https://t.co/2zBnWHySNY

2018-05-24 06:45:20 この4月~5月のShigaHeadlinesの人気ツイートの統計を見ると、初めて5桁のインプレッション(アクセス数)が達成しました!多数のリツイートや「いいね」ありがとう!さすが加藤登紀子さんのファン!~Lefa~も超人気!

My most popular tweet (about Kato Tokiko) in April–May got 12,723 impressions so far! 

2018-05-24 13:58:38 @tfa520 親切なコメントありがとうございます!おまけの写真を添付します。先日の第2回びわ湖音楽祭の〜Lefa〜サイン会の長蛇の列。熱心なファンばかり。今後の応援もよろしくお願いします。https://t.co/4jErtN0ZOT
2018-05-25 09:04:55 報道されていないことをここで述べます。#~Lefa~ 
2018-05-28 14:21:21 Hikone Higashi High School’s student team won the American Mathematical Society’s First Award of $2,000 for “Extension of Soddy’s Hexlet: Number of Spheres Generated by Nested Hexlets” as a Special Award at Intel ISEF 2018 in Pittsburgh, PA on May 13–18. https://t.co/E1ogHFsAB2
2018-05-28 14:21:39 Food poisoning caused diarrhea and fever in 52 elderly people (age 75–100) at a nursing home (青祥会) & elderly health care facility in Nagahama on May 23, 2018. C. perfringens was found in the food prepared by Meal Service Taniguchi (ミールサービスたにぐち加田店). Nothing fatal.
2018-05-28 14:25:41 Crown Prince Naruhito & Princess Masako visited northern Shiga on May 25–26 to attend a greenery event (みどりの愛護) at Nagahama Dome. They also visited a facility for disabled kids in Maibara (ふくしあ), Yanmar Museum, & Hikone Castle Museum.
2018-05-28 14:26:08 In Fukui city, Fukui Prefecture, the track and field stadium (福井県営陸上競技場) where Hikone-native KIRYU Yoshihide became the first Japanese to run 100 meters in less than 10 sec. at 9.98 sec. in Sept. 2017 has been renamed “9.98 STADIUM” as a nickname. #桐生祥秀
2018-05-28 14:27:11 Tickets on sale for the Otsu Basho sumo exhibition tournament on July 30 at Ukaruchan Arena (Shiga Prefectural Gymnasium) in Otsu. Let’s hope Otsu Mayor Naomi Koshi will be allowed to stand on the sumo ring for her speech. Ticket Pia P code 839-032, Lawson L code 5414 #大津場所 https://t.co/fRhxfCW0Ed
2018-05-30 14:27:45 Costing ¥3 billion, the new Uminoko Biwako Floating School ship’s major improvements include 4 decks (plus basement), electric propulsion, & wireless LAN. Now at Otsu Port awaiting its maiden voyage with 5th graders on June 4, 2018. #びわ湖フローティングスクール #うみのこ 
2018-06-04 11:15:06 Hikone Castle is repairing plaster walls on 2 sides. The side facing the lake was damaged by Typhoon No. 21 last Oct. The other side is having old plaster replaced. Plaster is applied in multiple layers, each layer has to dry before the next layer is applied. To be done by Nov. 
2018-06-13 12:13:12 A friend found this large red-eared slider on a busy road in Otsu & rescued it. I told him it was an invasive species & it shouldn’t be returned to the lake. After inquiring Lake Biwa Museum, etc., he found out that Shiga has no system to collect and dispose of these creatures. 
2018-06-13 12:15:19 先日に友人が大津の湖岸道路にあったこのアカミミガメを救助して持ち帰りました。外来種だを指摘すると処分方法を調べた。なんと、国が「緊急対策外来種」と指定されているにもかかわらず、滋賀は外来魚と同じようにアカミミガメの回収・処分が行っていません。琵琶湖博物館も処分方法を教えてくれない https://t.co/N1GzPVs8bI
2018-06-16 06:54:13 In Moriyama last Dec., a staff member at the Senior Center Tiffany nursing home シニアセンターティファニー was reported to have verbally abused (「クソじじい」) & barricaded a male patient. The home’s Yasu-based operator Shoeikai’s (翔英会) was ordered to implement reforms.
2018-06-16 06:54:33 On June 9, 18 adults suffered from food poisoning after dining at Anosorano-higashi restaurant アノソラノヒガシ in Kusatsu. Their symptoms of diarrhea and fever were not serious. The restaurant’s operation was suspended for 3 days.
2018-06-16 06:55:38 At Maibara City Hall, former civic dept. head Iwayama Koichi (60) 岩山光一 was arrested for the 4th time on June 11 for accepting bribes & bid rigging for electrical work contracts in 2016 for childcare centers in Maibara. The Hikone-based contractor was also arrested.#官製談合
2018-06-16 06:56:13 On June 11, the election commission in Koka sent 6 polling place admission tickets for the Shiga gubernatorial election by mistake to people ineligible to vote in Koka since they had moved out of the city. Officials are retrieving the errant tickets. #甲賀市投票所入場券6枚誤発送
2018-06-16 06:58:33 Age 14 female student attending a public jr high school in Ritto was arrested on June 12 for assaulting an age 30 woman teacher by grabbing her chest on May 25 after being scolded for using a prohibited elevator. No injuries. The student is denying the charges filed.
2018-06-16 06:59:06 Private Lodging Business Law (minpaku law) taking effect on June 15, 2018 requires private lodge operators to register with the local government & comply with regulations. As of June 14, 12 private lodges have been registered in Shiga. Certified lodges display this sign. #airbnb 
2018-06-16 07:00:11 A pleasant lunch in Konan the other day! Indian Chicken Curry flavored with yahei hot chili peppers at Upper Secret cafe near Kosei Station. Great for coffee or tea too. Akane-san, the friendly manager, once studied in Oklahoma and speaks English. #湖南市
2018-06-18 00:18:23 A strong earthquake has hit northern Osaka today at 7:58 am, magnitiude Lower 6. Also felt in Shiga with lower 5 in Otsu and M3 or M4 in northern Shiga. Train services in Shiga and Kansai have been suspended. https://t.co/YQaYSVC4hq https://t.co/RL9rvEUcnf
2018-06-18 04:02:07 No major earthquake damage in Shiga. No fatalities, only two minor injuries reported (both in Kusatsu). JR local lines stopped, but Shinkansen, Ohmi Railways, Keihan trains in Otsu, & Shigaraki Kogen Railway now running again. Shiga Jr. High suspended classes today. 志賀中学校
2018-06-18 08:13:42 In Shiga, the JR Biwako/Tokaido Line, Kosei Line, Kusatsu Line, and Hokuriku Line currently suspended should start running from around 7:00 pm at the earliest. https://t.co/Q9oRi30kOt
2018-06-18 14:17:15 All JR lines (Biwako/Tokaido, Hokuriku, Kusatsu, and Kosei Lines) in Shiga are now running, but on a delayed schedule. Kyoto–Nara Line is still suspended. https://t.co/Q9oRi30kOt
2018-06-19 06:36:40 Yesterday on June 18 when the Osaka earthquake occurred at 7:58 am, people on trains were stuck inside for 2 to 3 hours before they were let out only to walk to the nearest train station. Whenever you travel in Japan, always be prepared & carry water, snacks & wear walking shoes.
2018-06-19 16:00:10 Native of Omi-Hachiman and Yasu High School graduate, Takashi Inui #乾貴士 helped Japan (ranked 61st) win its first FIFA World Cup soccer game against Colombia (ranked 16th) 2-1 today. The first time an Asian team has beaten a S. American team (CONMEBOL). https://t.co/kwZGzp6F80 https://t.co/O8hZkyrsNn
2018-06-20 16:44:04 For students: FM Shiga is offering a free Lake Biwa tour by boat & bus on July 16 from Otsu Port at 8:50 am. They will visit Okinoshima island, Lake Nishinoko, and return to Otsu by bus by 5 pm. Tour guide Chiho-san speaks English. Apply online by July 4: https://t.co/hs6GQsc4Ps 
2018-06-24 23:00:25 Yesterday, Shiga Governor Taizo Mikazuki won reelection as governor for another 4 years. He defeated his sole opponent Kondo Manabu 近藤学, former vice-president of Shiga University. Voter turnout was the second lowest in Shiga’s history at 40.62%.
2018-06-24 23:01:08 Omi-Hachiman-native Inui Takashi once again played a key role for Japan at FIFA World Cup soccer on June 24, 2018. He scored Japan’s 1st goal against Senegal. He almost scored again when the ball hit the crossbar. The match ended in a draw at 2-2. 
2018-06-27 10:45:50 ~Lefa~ CDシングル「琵琶湖周航の歌」取り扱い店舗:

琵琶湖周航の歌 資料館

SUNMUSIC長浜店

HYPERBOOKS長浜店

HYPERBOOKS彦根店

SUNMUSIC近江八幡店

HYPERBOOKS八日市店

HYPERBOOKS水口店

SUNMUSIC守山店

HYPERBOOKS駒井沢店(草津市)

https://t.co/meMikNl2r7

2018-06-29 01:27:48 Kiryu Nozomi (32,桐生のぞみ), a nurse, indicted on June 26 for abandoning the corpse of her mother Shinobu (58) by cutting up the body in her bathtub & dumping the torso along a river near her home in Moriyama by March 2018. She disposed the other body parts with regular garbage.
2018-06-29 01:28:18 The national tragedy of the 9-year-old girl who got fatally crushed by a collapsed concrete brick wall during the Osaka earthquake prompted inspections of similar walls at all public schools in Shiga. Faulty walls were found at 16 schools. Some of these walls are being roped off.
2018-06-29 01:30:05 At the FIFA World Cup soccer match against Poland last night, Omi-Hachiman-native Takashi Inui was not in the starting lineup. Joined the game only toward the end. Although Japan lost 0-1, they made to the last 16 final tournament on fair play points. https://t.co/s0N0KLBhX5 https://t.co/Z6MBMUD6FB
2018-06-29 13:37:51 June 29 at around 2 pm, a tornado hit Maibara & damaged 85 buildings & injured 6 people in the Asahi, Buma, & Kitagata districts. At least one home lost its roof. Ohara, Santo, & Daito Elementary Schools were damaged, but all students returned home safely. https://t.co/ZAJRKsqSgl
2018-07-02 20:31:03 FIFA World Cup soccer: Heartbreaking defeat for Japan after taking the lead over Belgium 2-0, but Belgium made a stunning comeback with 3 goals. Omi-Hachiman-native Takashi Inui even scored a goal, but it wasn’t enough. Lots of tears, but stand tall Japan! https://t.co/heCJmgcHqF https://t.co/iYUKmTQ9As
2018-07-05 11:08:06 Due to heavy rains, flood warnings and evacuation orders have been issued for areas along Anegawa River in Nagahama (Biwa district) and Amanogawa River in Maibara (Nagaoka district).
2018-07-05 11:09:27 Due to heavy rain, train service has been suspended or delayed on the JR Hokuriku Line between Maibara and Tsuruga and on the JR Kosei Line between Omi-Maiko and Omi-Shiotsu. Check current status here: https://t.co/Q9oRi30kOt
2018-07-06 17:43:11 On July 6, 102 public elementary and jr high schools in Shiga (all schools in Nagahama, Takashima, and Maibara, and some in Otsu) canceled classes due to the heavy rains.
2018-07-06 17:46:55 Rain expected to continue today in Shiga on July 7. Due to possibility of landslides, do not hike in or near the mountains & rivers. JR trains will start on a normal schedule. Ohmi Railways may run on a delayed schedule. Shigaraki Kogen Railway may start running in late morning.
2018-07-07 19:52:31 Heavy rains have claimed one life in Shiga. On July 7, a man (77) in Adogawa, Takashima went out to check rice paddies and he tried to clear debris in an irrigation ditch when he fell into the ditch and drowned.
2018-07-07 19:58:29 Due to possibility of landslides and blocked paths, do not hike in or near the mountains & rivers. JR trains will start on a normal schedule. Ohmi Railways and Shigaraki Kogen Railway also running normally. All evacuation orders/warnings in Shiga have been lifted.
2018-07-09 15:29:47 In Shiga, it rained the most in Kutsuki, Takashima; Minami-Komatsu, Otsu; Imazu, Takashima; & Yogo, Nagahama. Flood damage minimal with only 1 home flooded (in Nagahama) & minor damage of Hikone Castle’s moat wall. Some soybean fields damaged in Takashima, Hikone, & Omi-Hachiman.
2018-07-09 15:30:04 Lake Biwa’s water level rose by 97 cm during July 5th–8th, reaching the overflow level. The Setagawa Weir in Otsu is now fully open to drain the lake water to the river. It will take at least 20 days until the water level goes down to normal levels.
2018-07-09 15:30:12 The rainy season in the Kinki Region (Shiga, Osaka, etc.) ended on July 9. Twelve days earlier than usual, and 4 days earlier than last year. Sunny and hot days are forecast during the coming week. Keep cool!
2018-07-12 16:12:07 Scoring twice at FIFA World Cup soccer, Shiga-native Takashi Inui has become a celebrity in Japan. After playing for Spanish club Eibar for 3 seasons, he has signed to play for La Liga team Real Betis based in Seville for 3 seasons from next month. #乾貴士https://t.co/pmZH6waMpz
2018-07-12 17:48:04 The Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay #聖火リレー is scheduled to start in Fukushima on March 26, 2020 and pass through Shiga Prefecture on May 28–29, 2020. It will arrive from Kyoto and go on to Fukui. The specific route will be decided by summer 2019. https://t.co/l1dMOgATrM https://t.co/JFSCb3pjLs
2018-07-17 20:57:42 The tornado that hit Maibara on June 29 caused about ¥4 million of agricultural damage to greenhouses, storehouses, and fields. Also, heavy rains on July 5th–7th damaged about 150 ha of fields in Shiga, mainly soybeans in Ritto (26 ha), Takashima (19 ha), and Nagahama (16 ha).
2018-07-17 20:58:20 Shiga Prefectural Government has agreed to pay ¥2 million in compensation to a male Shiga Pref. gov’t worker (30s) suffering from clinical depression due to overwork in Jan–Mar 2013 when he averaged 101 hours of overtime each month to cover a co-worker’s sick leave. #過重労働
2018-07-17 20:58:35 Check Shiga’s hazard maps for floods, landslides, earthquakes, and nuclear plant radiation leaks. https://t.co/ZxOu03fRdv
2018-07-17 20:59:05 Hot in Shiga! On July 15, an age 94 woman died of heatstroke while cutting weeds in her backyard field in Maibara, & an age 70 man in Otsu died of heatstroke in his home that had no air conditioning. On July 17, 29 people in Shiga were hospitalized for heat illness. None serious.
2018-07-17 20:59:27 On July 17, three female badminton club members at Ogi Junior High School in Otsu (大津市立仰木中学校) came down with heat exhaustion during practice while jogging for almost 30 min. They were hospitalized with mild symptoms.
2018-07-17 20:59:43 July 12 at Nango Jr High in Otsu (南郷中学校), a teacher (31) coaching the soft tennis club punished a boy for bad serves by having him run around campus 80 times (=18 km). After running for 30 min. (2 km), the boy collapsed from the heat & was taken by ambulance. Now recovering.
2018-07-17 20:59:58 Summer 2018 fireworks schedule for Shiga Prefecture: https://t.co/7nonZvTQEK
2018-07-26 14:17:33 Site of the Ii Clan’s residence near the Imperial Palace’s Sakuradamon Gate. Now a park with this historic Sakura-no-i well 桜の井remaining. On March 3, 1860, Chief Minister Ii Naosuke left this residence & was assassinated while on his way to the castle. 
2018-07-30 01:07:30 Shiga’s soybean farmers are having difficulty growing soybeans after the recent floods and the current heat. A lower yield is expected this season. Shiga is the Kansai Region’s largest soybean producer. You can find Shiga natto in Heiwado too.
2018-07-30 01:07:39 Ohmi High School beat Ayaha High School 8-4 on July 28 to represent Shiga at the 100th national high school baseball tournament at Koshien this summer. It will be their 13th Koshien summer appearance. #近江高校 #綾羽高校
2018-07-30 01:07:47 No major damage and no casualties in Shiga have been reported after Typhoon No. 12 (Jongdari) on July 28–29. Train service was affected and some homes in Otsu and Higashi-Omi had a power outage, but everything is back to normal now.
2018-07-30 12:52:46 Japan Sumo Association did not invite Otsu Mayor Naomi Koshi to speak at the Otsu Basho sumo exhibition tournament today at Ukaruchan Arena. They apparently declined to allow her to speak on the sumo ring because she’s female. How ridiculous & insulting. Glad I didn’t go. #越直美
2018-08-02 03:55:17 For 5 years in a row, Shiga’s 6th graders & 3rd-year jr high kids scored lower than the nat’l average on all scholastic achievement tests in April 2018. 6th graders had Japan’s lowest score (60%) for math. Jr high kids’ Japanese language score was among Japan’s worse. #学力テスト
2018-08-02 03:55:37 Enryakuji Temple’s National Treasure House 国宝殿 is holding a rare exhibition of 70+ Buddha statues until Nov. 30, 2018. Many are centuries old & a few are being displayed for the 1st time including one that survived Nobunaga’s Hie-zan torching in 1571. https://t.co/cKbcGQmePN
2018-08-05 01:50:23 Shiga Labor Bureau last fiscal year handled 3,276 cases of worker complaints, 5.6% more than the preceding year. Power harassment and bullying cases were the most common at 936 cases, followed by a desire to quit (375), and lower pay/benefits (275). #滋賀労働局 #労働相談
2018-08-05 01:50:32 Biwako Terrace atop Biwako Valley (elevation 1,100 m) has expanded its scenic tourist attraction with another lookout terrace in the north. The North Terrace has views of Biwako & Hira/Ibuki Mountains. Opened on Aug. 4. The original terrace faces east. #びわ湖テラス #ノーステラス
2018-08-05 01:51:39 Happy Tanabata! This small kimono shop named Omiya 近江屋 in Sunamachi Ginza in Tokyo is from Aisho, Shiga. Been here for 70 years, but they no longer sell any fabric from Shiga. This shopping street holds Tanabata Festival every Aug. #砂町銀座商店街https://t.co/PaLbftwuMV
2018-08-07 04:52:49 Ohmi High School stunningly defeated powerhouse Chiben Wakayama 7-3 today, their 1st game at the 100th Summer Koshien national high school baseball tournament. Japanese athletes sure cry a lot when they lose. #近江高等学校 #智弁和歌山 #夏の甲子園
2018-08-11 16:01:50 Average price of “Regular” gasoline at gas stations in Shiga has exceeded ¥150 per liter for 11 weeks in a row as of Aug. 6. Uncertainty over oil from Iran is affecting prices in Japan.
2018-08-11 16:02:23 On Aug. 7, a male Otsu City Hall section chief (51) saw Biwako fireworks with co-workers, drank alcohol, and drove his car. He then unknowingly hit a parked car and drove 5 km to his home. He reported to the police the next day. Punishment from the city forthcoming.
2018-08-11 16:02:52 At an elementary school in Aisho, an age 21 male clerical worker embezzled over ¥6.88 million that was to be paid to a school lunch provider. He withdrew cash from the school’s bank account for 6 months until March 2018. He used it for pachinko and food. He was fired on Aug. 10.
2018-08-11 16:03:04 In July 2018, 706 people in Shiga were taken by ambulance due to heat illness. The most ever for July since 10 years ago & 2.61 times more than July 2017. Over 42% were age 65 or older & 2 of them died. Last month, Otsu had a record 14 days with temperatures soaring 35˚C or more.
2018-08-11 16:04:18 For the Obon summer vacation, Aug. 11 is the peak for people traveling to their hometowns, and Aug. 14–15 will be the peak for people returning back to the city. Expect packed trains and roads on these days. Last vacation day is Aug. 19. Stay cool and have a safe summer vacation!
2018-08-13 09:01:33 Hikone’s Ohmi High School defeated Gunma’s Maebashi Ikuei 4-3 today, their 2nd game at the 100th Summer Koshien national high school baseball tournament. Great game. How do they play in this heat?? Love their Biwako-blue uniforms. #近江高等学校#前橋育英高校 #夏の甲子園
2018-08-18 14:34:59 On Aug. 17 in Hie, Yasu, a man in his 30s riding his bicycle fell into a 70-cm wide hole in the road where a drainage pipe was being replaced. The construction workers were taking a break and left the hole out in the open. The man sustained major injuries like a fractured jaw.
2018-08-18 14:35:34 On Aug. 11 at Sakura Cemetery さくら墓園 in Yasu, about 300 highly venomous redback spiders and their eggs were found. They were promptly killed. The female with the red stripe is the nasty one. Kill on sight, but do not touch with bare skin. #セアカゴケグモhttps://t.co/nk8kAZVpJx
2018-08-18 14:36:08 On Aug. 17, Ohmi High School beat Shizuoka’s Tokoha-Dai Kikugawa 9-4 for their 3rd game at the 100th Summer Koshien nat’l high school baseball tournament. So they advanced to the quarterfinals today, but lost to Akita’s Kana-ashi Nogyo 2-3. #近江高等学校 常葉大菊川 金足農 甲子園
2018-08-21 13:46:56 Only 40% of Shiga’s public high school classrooms have air conditioners. This is lower than the national average & the lowest in Kansai. Shiga’s remaining 22 public high schools without air conditioners expect to have them within the next 3 years or sooner, costing ¥4.6 billion.
2018-08-21 13:47:25 Four basketball players representing Japan at the current Asian Games in Jakarta were kicked out for “inappropriate” behavior with a local woman taken to a hotel. One of the players, Takuma Sato #佐藤卓磨, is from Shiga Lakestars. Pure disgrace & disgust. https://t.co/WVVh6wkxB4
2018-08-23 08:39:36 Due to Typhoon No. 20, train services have been suspended or delayed on JR Lines in Shiga. Ohmi Railways will stop running tonight by 8:00 p.m. Current status of JR lines here: https://t.co/Q9oRi30kOt
2018-08-24 17:08:16 Typhoon No. 20 damaged white plaster walls on Hikone Castle’s Tenbin Yagura & Sawaguchi Tamon Yagura, both National Important Cultural Properties. Three people in Shiga got minor injuries due to the winds, no deaths. Roofs blew off a home in Konan & waste-disposal plant in Kora.
2018-08-28 15:55:31 Okura Yohei (31, 大藏陽平) male jr. high teacher in Hikone arrested for indecent acts with age 14 jr. high girl at a Hikone hotel in June. Okura, who lives in Higashi-Omi, has admitted to the charges.
2018-08-28 15:55:49 The jr. high school soft tennis coach (31) in Otsu who ordered a boy player to run 80 laps around the school in the summer heat & another male teacher (28) at the same school who grabbed a student’s neck are being confined to their homes for their acts of corporal punishment.
2018-08-28 15:56:05 The number of disabled workers was found to be inflated by five in the Shiga Prefectural Government and by 19 in the Prefectural Board of Education. They aren’t legally disabled. At least 2.5% of prefectural workers & 2.4% of BOE workers must be legally disabled. 障害者雇用水増
2018-08-28 15:56:30 Tomoyuki Sugimoto (39, 杉本倫孝) from Shiga Prefecture who was detained by North Korea in early Aug. has been released (deported) and arrived in Beijing on Aug. 28. Although he went as a tourist, he may have been suspected of filming a military facility in Nanpo.
2018-08-28 15:56:44 Synchronized swimming duo Yukiko Inui (from Omi-Hachiman 乾友紀子) and partner Megumu Yoshida 吉田萌 won the silver medal for women’s duet artistic swimming at the current Asian Games in Jakarta on Aug. 28. China won the gold.

Shiga History January–April 2018Chronological History of Shiga | Shiga History Sept.–Dec. 2018

Shiga Prefecture Hazard Maps

The recent massive flooding in Western Japan from Kyushu to Gifu has made many of us living in Japan check the vulnerability of our own homes to severe flooding. One way to do this is to check the hazard maps published by local governments.

As listed below, Shiga Prefecture has published online hazard maps for floods, landslides, earthquakes, and nuclear power plant radiation leakage. The hazard areas are color-coded and quite detailed (you can zoom in and scroll around your neighborhood). The green “running man” icon indicates refuge areas (parks, schools, etc.). All the hazard maps are in Japanese only, no versions in English or other foreign languages. And so I’ll explain about these maps so you can have a basic understanding.

We have to look at the maps as just a rough guide. It’s impossible to accurately predict how your neighborhood or home will be affected in a major disaster (especially earthquakes).

The best thing to do is to be prepared. But it’s hard to be fully prepared for something you’ve never experienced or something that strikes unexpectedly. At the very least, always keep a stock of bottled water (at least one week’s worth), canned food and snacks, first-aid kit, and a hard hat. And whenever you go out, always carry water and snacks in case you get stuck on a train in an earthquake, etc.

Japan is certainly a disaster-prone country. Earthquakes, heavy rains, typhoons, floods, landslides, tornadoes, tsunami, volcanic eruptions, leaks from nuclear power plants, and man-made errors. All of these can be quite frightening, but keep in mind that the chances of you dying or getting injured by any of the above is still minuscule compared to dying due to a traffic accident, smoking, consuming too much fat and sugar, not exercising enough, or a disease like cancer. So before looking down on Japan for its disasters, look down on your own bad habits and lifestyle that may affect your health and lifespan. (Eat more vegetables, fruits, and natto, and exercise more.)

滋賀県防災情報マップ(滋賀県ハザードマップ)

Shiga Prefecture Flood Hazard Map
http://shiga-bousai.jp/dmap/map/index?l=M_r_k_risk_map&z=&lon=&lat=
This map highlights the areas in Shiga that can get flooded due to heavy rain, overflowing rivers, or breached riverbanks. The map’s sidebar lets you set various parameters such as the probability (once in 200, 100, or 10 years) of flooding. By default, the map shows a probability of once in 200 years. The default color coding is as follows:
Aqua: Areas that can get flooded up to 0.5 meter.
Yellow: Areas that can get flooded up to 1 meter.
Green: Areas that can get flooded up to 2 meters (1st floor height).
Pink: Areas that can get flooded up to 3 or 4 meters.
Red: Areas that can get flooded up to 5 meters (2nd floor height).

River Cameras in Shiga
http://c.shiga-bousai.jp/shigapref/pc/index.html
Shiga Prefecture has live cameras monitoring major rivers. They are connected online so we can see the river’s water level. On this map, click on a camera icon to view the camera’s river image online. The image is updated every 5 min. (It’s not a video.) The map also has icons indicating the water level. Blue is normal while red is the river’s flood warning level.

Shiga Prefecture Landslide Hazard Map
http://shiga-bousai.jp/dmap/map/index?l=M_d_risk_map&z=&lon=&lat=
This map highlights the areas in Shiga vulnerable to landslides. Mountainous areas where a landslide can occur are outlined by a brown polygon and filled with slanted, vertical, or horizontal lines. (These lines indicate the type of landslide.) The yellow areas show where the landslide can bury homes and property. Again, this map is only a rough guide. Heavy rains or prolonged rains can well expand the landslide or mudflow to cover a larger area than indicated in yellow (土砂洪水氾濫). (The landslide hazard maps for areas in Okayama and Hiroshima flooded in early July 2018 proved to be woefully inaccurate since the landslides affected a much larger area than shown on the maps.) If you live near a mountain, you need to be extra vigilant during and after heavy rains.

Shiga Prefecture Earthquake Hazard Map
http://shiga-bousai.jp/dmap/map/index?l=M_e_risk_map&z=&lon=&lat=
This is an interesting map, but I wouldn’t rely on it too much. In fact, it might be pretty useless. There are just too many unknown factors, especially unknown earthquake faults. The two major earthquake faults known in Shiga are the Yanagase Fault (柳ヶ瀬断層) in northeastern Shiga in Nagahama and the Western Lake Biwa Fault Area (琵琶湖西岸断層帯) which is a series of faults along Western Shiga from Otsu to Takashima. The last major earthquake that struck Shiga was the Anegawa Earthquake (Yanagase Fault) in 1909 striking Nagahama (Torahime, Anegawa River area, and Gifu). It was magnitude 6.8 and 35 people died and 643 people were injured in Shiga. Over 2,000 homes in Shiga collapsed.
The default color coding is as follows:
Blue: Areas that may have a Magnitude -5 earthquake.
Green: Areas that may have a Magnitude 5+ earthquake (bookshelves and cupbards falling over).
Yellow: Areas that may have a Magnitude -6 earthquake (roof tiles may fall off, furniture falling over).
Orange: Areas that may have a Magnitude 6+ earthquake (buildings can collapse).
Red: Areas that may have a Magnitude 7 earthquake (buildings can collapse).

Shiga Prefecture Nuclear Plant Radiation Hazard Map
http://shiga-bousai.jp/dmap/map/index?l=M_g_gensiryoku_map&z=&lon=&lat=
This map shows a 30 km radius (in orange) from each nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture. Of course, the radiation can spread beyond this radius depending on prevailing winds. Local officials are still trying to figure out how people can evacuate northern Shiga en masse in case of a major radiation breach in Fukui. If there is a major radiation leak, say good-bye to our water supply and endemic fish. People in Kyoto and Osaka will also suffer. And yet, big business and local politicians think it is worth the risk.

Index of Shiga Prefecture’s hazard maps (in Japanese)
http://shiga-bousai.jp/dmap/top/index

Take care everyone.

Summer 2018 fireworks in Shiga Prefecture

hanabi

Here’s the 2018 summer fireworks (hanabi) schedule for Shiga Prefecture (Shiga-ken hanabi) listed by date. Keep in mind that foul weather is always possible and fireworks can be postponed or canceled. “More info” links go to Japanese-language pages. (No information in English except on this page. That’s why I create this page every year.)

滋賀県の花火大会情報・日程2018年

Updated: Aug. 8, 2018

Compiled by Philbert Ono

–July 15, 2018–
Takamiya Noryo Hanabi Taikai in Takamiya, Hikone, 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Near the Inugami River Muchinbashi Bridge. 10-min. walk from Ohmi Railways Takamiya Station. If rained out, to be postponed to July 9. Map
More info: 高宮商工繁栄会 TEL:0749-22-2075
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e01080/

–July 14, 2018–
Echigawa Gion Noryo Hanabi Taikai in Aisho, 7:40 pm – 9:00 pm
At two locations along the Echigawa River bank near Miyukibashi Bridge. 15-min. walk from Ohmi Railways Echigawa Station. If rained out, to be postponed to July 16. About 40,000 people are expected. Map
愛知川祇園納涼祭花火大会
More info: 愛知川駅コミュニティハウスるーぶる愛知川 TEL:0749-42-8444
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00768/

Yokaichi Shotoku Matsuri

Yokaichi Shotoku Matsuri

–July 21, 2018–
Yokaichi Shotoku Matsuri (Finale Fireworks) in Higashi-Omi, 8:30 pm – 9:00 pm
This is a dance festival starting at 7:30 pm and ends with fireworks from 8:30 pm near Yokaichi Station. The festival is a huge bon dance with 600 dancers dancing to Shiga’s native Goshu Ondo folk songs. A large section of the main road in front of Yokaichi Station is closed to traffic for the festival. The festival is named after Shotoku Taishi. Map | Video
八日市聖徳まつり
More info: 八日市商工会議所 TEL: 0748-22-0186
http://www.odakocci.jp/pickup/matsuri.html

Oideyasu Yasu-shi Natsu Matsuri Hanabi Taikai in Yasu, 7:45 pm – 8:25 pm
Along the Shin River. 25-min. by shuttle bus from JR Yasu Station. Shuttle buses will be running. Stage entertainment will start at 4 pm. If rained out, to be cancelled. Map
おいでやす!! 野洲市夏まつり花火大会
More info: 野洲市商工観光課 TEL: 077-587-6008
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e188200/

–July 27, 2018–
Nagahama Kita-Biwako Hanabi Taikai at Nagahama Port, 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
10-min. walk from JR Nagahama Station. Very crowded so go early to save a spot or pay for special seating for 1,500 yen or 2,500 yen. If rained out, to be cancelled. Map
長浜・北びわ湖大花火大会
More info: 長浜市観光振興課 Phone: 0749-65-6521
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00792/

–July 28, 2018– (Due to the typhoon, postponed to Aug. 25)
Otsu Shiga Hanabi Taikai fireworks, 7:45 pm – 8:30 pm
Watch the fireworks over the lake from the famous Omi-Maiko beach. Near JR Omi-Maiko Station (Kosei Line) in western Otsu. If rained out, to be postponed to July 29.
大津志賀花火大会
More info: 大津志賀花火大会実行委員会 TEL:077-592-0378
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00471/

–July 29, 2018– (Due to the typhoon, postponed, date TBD.)
Koka Natsu Matsuri fireworks in Minakuchi, Koka, 7:45 pm – 8:30 pm
Koka’s biggest fireworks display held along Yasu River. Part of a local festival of stage entertainment, games, and food stalls. 10-min. walk from Ohmi Railways Minakuchi Jonan Station. Map
甲賀夏まつり
More info: 甲賀市観光協会 TEL:0748-60-2690
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00157/

–Aug. 1, 2018–
Hikone Dai-Hanabi Taikai at Matsubara Beach, Hikone, 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
35-min. walk from Hikone Station. Or take a shuttle bus provided from Hikone Station to a sports ground from which it’s a 15-min. walk to the beach. If rained out, to be cancelled. Map
彦根・北びわ湖大花火大会
More info: (社)彦根観光協会 Phone: 0749-23-0001
http://www.hikoneshi.com/jp/event/articles/c/hanabi

Ogoto Onsen Noryo Hanabi Taikai in Ogoto Port, Otsu, 8 pm – 8:30 pm
20-min. walk from JR Ogoto Onsen Station. Fireworks can be seen from most onsen (hot spring) ryokan and outdoor baths in Ogoto. If rained out, to be postponed to Aug. 2. Map
おごと温泉納涼花火大会
More info: おごと温泉観光協会 Phone: 077-578-1650
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00618/

Omi-Imazu Furusato Natsu Matsuri, Takashima, 9:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Climax of Imazu’s summer festival starting from 1 pm. Near JR Omi-Imazu Station.
近江今津ふるさと夏祭り やっさ!今津!!2018
More info: 近江今津ふるさと夏まつり実行委員会事務局 Phone: 0740-22-2108

–Aug. 4, 2018–
♦ Makino Summer Carnival at Makino Sunny Beach, Takashima, 8:30 pm
マキノサマーカーニバル2018
More info: 四季遊園マキノ交流促進協議会事務局 Phone: 0740-28-8002

Takashima Summer Festival at Makino Sunny Beach, Takashima, 9:00 pm
Fireworks is part of their summer festival that starts at 4 pm.
2018たかしま夏まつり
More info: たかしま夏まつり実行委員会 Phone: 0740-36-2011

Ujisato Matsuri in Hino, 8:45 pm – 9 pm
Fireworks is the climax of this summer festival (bon dance, etc.) held in the northern parking lot of Hino Town Hall starting in mid-afternoon.
氏郷まつり「夏の陣」2018
More info: 日野町イベント実行委員会 Phone: 0748-52-6562

Kotonarie Summer Festa in Hibari Park in Higashi-Omi
Part of an illumination and music festival. 20-min. by bus from Yokaichi Station. Fireworks start at 8:40 pm.
コトナリエサマーフェスタ
More info: 東近江市湖東商工会 Phone: 0749-45-2571

Konan Natsu Matsuri in Konan, fireworks at 8:00 pm
Fireworks is the climax of this summer festival (Goshu Ondo bon dance, stage entertainment, etc.) held at the Yasugawa River Shinzui Koen park (野洲川親水公園).
湖南市夏まつり
More info: 湖南市観光協会 Phone: 0748-71-2157
http://www.burari-konan.jp/

–Aug. 7, 2018–
♦ Biwako Dai-Hanabi Taikai at Hama-Otsu and Nagisa Park in Otsu, 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
This is the big one, but a steep admission (around ¥4,400, even for children above age 3) is charged in prime viewing areas along Hama-Otsu. Hama-Otsu Port will be totally walled off so you cannot see the fireworks from the street. Viewing areas along Nagisa Park that used to be free are no longer free. They will have about 29,000 paid seating along the shore. It will be terribly crowded with people (about 350,000). Spectacular show (and cost), but have fun trying to get home via the tiny nearby train stations or gridlocked roads afterward. Foul weather will postpone it to Aug. 10. Map
びわ湖大花火大会
More info: びわ湖大花火大会実行委員会 TEL: 077-511-1530
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00765/

–Aug. 16, 2018
♦ Somagawa Natsu Matsuri near Kibukawa Station, Koka
Fireworks are part of the summer festival with taiko drummers and lantern floating on the river. Held annually on Aug. 16.
杣川夏まつり
More info: 甲賀市観光協会 Phone: 0748-65-0708

–Aug. 17, 2018–
♦ Takebe Taisha Senkosai Fireworks at Seta River in Otsu, 7:50 pm – 9 pm
Near Seta-no-Karahashi Bridge. Short walk from Karahashi-mae Station on the Keihan Line. Fireworks will climax the waterborne Takebe Taisha Senkosai festival on boats starting at 4 pm. Map
瀬田川花火大会
More info: 建部大社 Phone: 077-545-0038
https://hanabi.walkerplus.com/detail/ar0725e00357/

–Aug. 25, 2018–
♦ Kinomoto Jizo Dai-ennichi fireworks in Nagahama, 8:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Held near JR Kinomoto Station. Climax of a local festival with food stalls and games held during Aug. 22–25.
木之本地蔵大縁日 8月22日(日)~25日(水)(花火は25日のみ)
More info: ふるさと夏まつり実行委員会 Phone: 0749-82-5900
http://kitabiwako.jp/event/event_9406/

–Essential Vocabulary–
hanabi (花火) – fireworks
hanabi taikai (花火大会) – fireworks (sometimes a contest)
Natsu Matsuri (夏まつり) – Summer festival
noryo (納涼) – Enjoying the cool of a summer evening (at a river, park, etc.)

Shiga History January–April 2018

Chronology of Shiga Prefecture’s major news headlines for January–April 2018 (according to the year, month, day, and time posted at GMT).

Originally posted on Twitter under Shiga Headlines by Philbert Ono. Twitter posts are limited to 280 English characters including spaces and links (shortened by Twitter). Dates and times below are based on GMT, not Japan time.

2018-01-01 11:21:58 迎春 Happy 2018! Wishing everyone a safe, healthy, and productive new year. Thank you for reading Shiga Headlines, Shiga Blog, & https://t.co/MzT4BdgWjB. I’ll be adding more top-quality content in 2018. It’s the details that make it interesting and useful, and fun to write. https://t.co/kP1UPj0zm4
2018-01-06 02:12:23 Bilingual video of Kyoto University’s Biwako Shuko no Uta 100th anniversary celebration held on Nov. 25, 2017. Lake Biwa Rowing Song also sung in English. 京都大学「琵琶湖周航の歌」誕生百周年記念事業のダイジェスト版動画(66分)。グリークラブ、吹奏楽団等。https://t.co/Hj9cwLn4x6
2018-01-08 12:09:53 As of Oct. 1, 2017, Shiga had 53,211 males & 54,493 females (7.7% of Shiga’s pop.) born in the Year of the Dog. The lowest figure among the 12 Oriental zodiac years. Age 48 (b. 1970) had the highest number of Dog Year people at 20,631, while 1,458 Dog people were age 96 or older.
2018-01-11 11:52:37 The fire-walking ceremony (火渡り神事) that was held annually in Feb. by Sugawara Shrine (菅原神社) in Yasu will be canceled indefinitely from this year. The shrine’s priest passed away in Oct. and his son is unable to take over the ritual performed to dispel illness & disasters.
2018-01-11 12:00:37 Influenza warning has been issued for all of Shiga as the number of patients (1,320 as of Jan. 7) is expected to increase further. Both Type A and B have been found in Shiga. Wash your hands, etc., and take care even if you got your flu shot.
2018-01-15 10:45:13 Beautiful view of Mt. Hiei from Aeon Mall Kusatsu early this afternoon. The Food Court on the 3rd floor has large picture windows, very clean. Short bus ride from JR Minami-Kusatsu Station. #イオンモール草津 https://t.co/6IZOMZAjuQ
2018-01-18 06:55:53 Major construction continues in front of JR Nagahama Station (east side). They are building a pedestrian deck. 
2018-01-20 02:06:38 The old Otsu PARCO shopping complex that closed last Aug. will reopen as a new shopping complex in late April with about 40 stores including Heiwado, Yamada Denki, a sports shop, and bookstore cafe.
2018-01-24 13:39:30 Private email account of an instructor at the University of Shiga Prefecture was hacked from overseas, resulting in the leak of personal info on 168 students (their names, addresses, academic records, post-graduation plans, etc.). Poor students…
2018-01-25 02:48:28 Due to snow, trains are delayed on the Biwako/Tokaido Line between Maibara and Kyoto. Trains between Maibara and Nagoya also delayed, but running. Ohmi Railway trains are delayed on most lines. Lots of snow in northern Shiga. Great for skiers. https://t.co/Q9oRi30kOt
2018-01-27 06:37:15 Maibara City Hall worker Mori Atsushi (39, 森篤志) pleaded guilty at Otsu District Court on Jan. 26 for bid-rigging a construction project to expand a childcare facility in Maibara. He leaked the bidding info to a construction company he favored. Sentenced to 18 months in jail.
2018-01-27 06:37:28 In 2017, the annual number of stalker cases reported to Shiga Police reached a record high of 351. Many stemmed from couples who broke up. 21 stalker arrests were made, and 58 police warnings were issued. Be careful of who you date.
2018-01-27 06:39:00 Sadly, Dr. Ikai Tsuyoshi (68, 猪飼剛) & son Satoshi from Shiga apparently accidentally skiied off course at Lotte Arai Resort in Myoko, Niigata on Jan. 24 and could not be rescued in time. Their bodies will be recovered later. A reminder to skiers to never ski in the backcountry.
2018-01-27 06:39:20 On Jan. 22, 2018, Maibara reached a record 400 consecutive days (since Dec. 18, 2016) without any traffic accident fatalities. This is the longest such period among Shiga’s cities and towns. Local police have reinforced the monitoring of fatality-prone sections since last June.
2018-01-30 01:03:59 Take the Shiga Quiz! 100 basic (?) quiz questions about your favorite prefecture. Heavily illustrated. There’s no other quiz like it. https://t.co/HukbMwc2Rn
2018-01-30 01:06:08 Also take the Shiga Image Quiz. 50 questions showing 50 images of Shiga’s most iconic sights and attractions you should know about. An excellent visual introduction to Shiga. https://t.co/VyuAAuqIHc
2018-02-01 20:58:09 I didn’t know this until now, but Dr. Pryse Duerfeldt in Marquette, MI passed away in July 2017. I’ve never met him in person, but he emailed me a few times over the years & avidly supported https://t.co/MzT4BdgWjB & sister-city relations w/Higashi-Omi. My belated condolences.
2018-02-02 23:22:26 For 5 years in a row in 2017, more people moved out of Shiga than those who moved in. Cities in southern Shiga, especially Kusatsu (+690), Moriyama (+369), and Otsu (+238) saw gains, while Higashi-Omi (-497), Nagahama (-427), Konan (-408), & Takashima (-361) saw losses.
2018-02-02 23:22:35 Reservations for Lake Biwa Canal boat rides starting on March 29 between Otsu & Kyoto now being accepted online (in Japanese only). Fares start at ¥4,000 for a 55-min. ride from Miidera to Keage. Boats will run until May 28 & in Oct.–Nov. Should be fun. https://t.co/hGd2BTfvwg
2018-02-06 21:29:41 From fall 2018, Shiga will start issuing newly-designed car license plates showing Lake Biwa and Chikubushima island. The design was the overwhelming favorite among the four choices presented last fall for voting by Shiga residents. 
2018-02-06 21:31:00 Opened in July 2017, Ekimachi Terrace Nagahama in front of JR Nagahama Station is bleeding red ink. Nagahama’s deputy mayor has been promoted as its president. They will build a kids’ play area on the 2nd floor to attract more families to this customer-sparse commercial complex. https://t.co/4JhrrxGQ8v
2018-02-06 21:31:15 Koka City Hall’s General Affairs Dept. head & other managers committed ballot count fraud & coverup for the House of Representatives election on Oct. 22, 2017. Total ballots counted didn’t add up, so they stuffed invalid ballots to compensate. A missing ballot box was later found
2018-02-06 21:31:28 Too bad Shiga won’t have any athletes at PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics. Our last hope was freestyle moguls skier Ito Miki (30) from Hino aiming for her 4th Winter Olympics but didn’t do well enough (22nd place) at the Freestyle Ski World Cup in Mont-Tremblant, Canada in Jan.
2018-02-08 01:25:49 At Koka City Hall, a missing ballot box with uncounted ballots was found after ballot count managers had already stuffed invalid ballots to match the correct total. One manager then took home the uncounted ballots and burned them to coverup their illegal ballot stuffing.
2018-02-08 01:29:03 Due to heavy snow, trains are currently not running on JR Kosei Line between Omi-Imazu and Omi-Shiotsu, and on JR Hokuriku Line between Nagahama and Tsuruga. Check current status here: https://t.co/Q9oRi30kOt
2018-02-09 06:28:14 Wow, “Hello Otsu” Facebook page in English (by Otsu Tourist Association) has over 42,000 followers. Is that for real?? Their previous “Otsu Style” FB English page had only 344 followers. https://t.co/4F7dTU0Urt
2018-02-12 22:57:19 New York Times紙の記事が話題になりました。多数の有名人や政治家などがフェイクフォロワー(fake followers)を買っていると判明。ばれやすいし、詐欺と同等。信用は失われる。 https://t.co/rIRgYIfD67
2018-02-12 22:57:48 Koka City Hall’s General Affairs Dept. chief Yasui Tatsuya (57, 保井達也) & 2 other managers on the election committee who committed ballot count fraud & coverup last Oct. have been fired on Feb. 9. Koka will have an outside committee to investigate & propose preventive measures.
2018-02-12 22:57:59 Hikone policeman Nishimura Hitoshi (32, 西村仁志) arrested & fired for DUI in Taga on Dec. 28. He was sleeping in his car at an intersection when another policeman approached & he sped home. Asked his family to lie & say they drove him home. Court fined him ¥500,000.
2018-02-12 23:01:27 NHK TV national news this morning spotlighted Shigaraki’s plight in trying to survive as its pottery production has dwindled to 1/4 or 1/5 of its peak. 信楽陶器工業協同組合、信楽町観光協会はまだ外国語版のホームページがありません。五輪はあと二年。
2018-02-15 03:38:34 The family of the Otsu City Public Enterprise Bureau worker in his 40s who overdosed on tranquilizers & died in March 2015 after suffering from power harassment by a male superior for a year will receive ¥8 mil. compensation from the city. Unnamed culprit received a mere pay cut.
2018-02-17 01:16:10 “Hello Otsu” Facebook page in English (by Otsu Tourist Association) now has over 47,000 followers. That’s 5,000 more than a week ago. What a miracle! Meanwhile, their Japanese FB page has only 1,500 followers. https://t.co/4F7dTU0Urt
2018-02-19 00:06:50 Hikone is now selling Hiko-nyan stickers for the LINE messaging app. For ¥120, you get a set of 16 stickers showing Hiko-nyan in new, cutesy poses such as “Thank you!” “Sayonara!” “Come here!” “No good!” and “Good night!” (in Japanese only). Includes Iinosuke stickers. 
2018-02-24 13:12:16 Nice to see a Shiga company being a major sponsor of Tokyo’s biggest annual sporting event, the Tokyo Marathon. Got my volunteer uniform today for the mega-marathon tomorrow (36,000 runners + 11,000 volunteers). 
2018-02-28 14:45:07 Too bad the tanuki and fox were not chosen as the official mascots for the Tokyo Olympics. They got only 35,291 votes. The futuristic superhero mascots (yet unnamed) won with 109,041 votes by Japanese elementary school kids. A tanuki mascot would’ve made Shigaraki very busy.
2018-02-28 15:00:46 Higashi-Omi has agreed to pay ¥32 million in compensation to the family of the age 73 man from Sakai, Osaka who died when the giant kite fell on him at the Odako Matsuri giant kite festival in May 2015. Still unknown when the kite festival will restart. Won’t be in 2018.
2018-03-01 11:59:07 After educating 530,000 5th graders about Lake Biwa for 35 years (since 1983), Shiga’s Uminoko “Floating School” completed its final voyage for 5th graders today. The aging ship’s replacement (also named “Uminoko”) will sail this May. Otsukaresama Uminoko (“Child of the Lake”)!! https://t.co/PTHQi73jpK
2018-03-02 13:46:19 The public can board and tour the old Uminoko “Floating School” at Otsu Port on March 11, from 9:15 am to 10:30 am before its official retirement ceremony. Your last chance to say “Good-bye and thank you” to this wonderful ship. #うみのこお別れ見学会 https://t.co/R1BBxGVuR4
2018-03-04 11:31:26 Kenyan Macharia NDIRANGU won the 73rd Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon today in 2:07’53”. NAKAMURA Shogo #中村匠吾 was 7th at 2:10’51”. Photo: Macharia (left) glancing at 2nd place Albert KORIR (also Kenyan) at Lake Biwa Canal a few km before the finish. #2018びわ湖毎日マラソン 
2018-03-10 08:16:10 In Omi-Hachiman today, visited one of the neighborhoods #宮内町building a festival float for the Sagicho Matsuri on March 17–18. Made of edible materials featuring the Year of the Dog. Takes about 2 months to build. This dog’s fur is made of jute fibers. Beautiful. #左義長まつり 
2018-03-20 17:41:45 さすが近江八幡。八幡堀の見つかりにくい駅行きのバス停の案内は英語にも表示。大いに助かる(白雲館前)。 Omi-Hachiman is tourist-friendly even for foreigners. Pointer to the bus stop at Hachiman-bori Canal. 
2018-03-20 17:42:12 Beautiful weather in Omi-Hachiman last weekend for 13 beautiful Year of the Dog floats (plus three children’s floats) at the annual Sagicho Matsuri. About 70,000 spectators enjoyed the float procession on Sat. and float battles and float burning on Sun. #左義長まつり #近江八幡 
2018-03-24 11:35:37 Zeze High School got wiped out by Japan Aiviation High School Ishikawa 0-10 in their 1st game today at the 90th Senbatsu Spring Koshien national high school baseball tournament. Two other teams from Shiga will play soon.
2018-03-25 11:33:11 Saio Princess Procession today in Tsuchiyama, Koka. They arrived here at the National Historic Site of Tarumi Tongu, one of the palaces where the princess stayed on her way from Kyoto to Ise during the 9th–13th centuries. She wears a Juni-hitoe kimono. #あいの土山斎王群行 #甲賀市 
2018-03-28 05:15:52 Hikone Higashi High School beat Keio Senior High School (Kanagawa) 4-3 in their 1st game today at the 90th Senbatsu Spring Koshien national high school baseball tournament. Next, they will play on March 31 at 11 am against Hanamaki Higashi High School (Iwate). #彦根東高等学校
2018-03-31 12:04:06 Both Shiga high school teams lost their second match at the 90th Senbatsu Spring Koshien national high school baseball tournament today. Hikone Higashi High School lost to Hanamaki Higashi High School (Iwate) 0-1, and Ohmi lost to Seiryo (Ishikawa) 3-4. Both were close games.
2018-04-06 19:46:33 The evening illumination of cherry blossoms at Omi-Fuji Karyoku Koen Park in Yasu this weekend has been canceled because the flowers bloomed a week early this year and they are now mostly gone.
2018-04-06 20:00:30 The old Otsu PARCO shopping complex will reopen this month on April 27 as “Oh! Me Otsu Terrace” with over 30 stores including Friend Mart (Heiwado), Yamada Denki, a sports shop, TSUTAYA bookstore, Can Do, United Cinemas, Saizeriya, Shiga Bank, & Curves. https://t.co/FJdqcttTWJ
2018-04-09 15:19:33 The strong magnitude 6.1 earthquake that hit Oda, Shimane Prefecture on April 9 at 1:32 am was also felt slightly in Shiga, M2 in places like Otsu, Nagahama, Maibara, Omi-Hachiman, and Takashima, and M1 in Hikone, Koka, and Higashi-Omi.
2018-04-09 15:19:56 Hikone-native swimmer Yui Ohashi #大橋悠依 set a new Japanese record in winning the Women’s 400-meter individual medley in 4:30.82 at Japan Swim 2018 nat’l championships (第94回日本選手権水泳競技大会競泳競技) at Tatsumi, Tokyo on April 8. Also won the 200-meter individual medley.
2018-04-11 15:17:01 今夜4月12日18:30にNHK総合に放送される「おうみ発630」長浜市出身のバンド~Lefa~ボーカル北川陽大さん ~滋賀を音楽で盛り上げたい。Watch NHK Otsu TV news tonight at 6:30 pm to hear Kitagawa Akihiro sing a special song. 
2018-04-12 13:19:10 Founded in 1933 in Hikone, Takata Corporation (タカタ株式会社) that filed for bankruptcy in June 2017 due to the massive recall of defective and deadly automotive airbags has been taken over by Joyson Safety Systems in the US. After 85 years, its name “Takata” is now gone.
2018-04-12 13:40:32 Last night (April 11) inside the police koban in front of JR Kawase Station in Hikone, a rookie policeman (19) shot & killed police sergeant Imoto Akira 井本光 (41), a co-worker. He was angered by Imoto’s disparagement. He fled the scene in a police car, but was soon caught.
2018-04-12 13:51:47 Some cherry blossoms still remain at Lake Yogo today in Nagahama. Yaezakura is starting to bloom. 
2018-04-14 08:29:58 April 15 is Nagahama Hikiyama Matsuri’s main day starting at 10 am at Nagahama Hachimangu Shrine. Child kabuki will be performed on 4 floats in this order: Shojo-maru (猩々丸), Ho’o-zan (鳳凰山), Takasago-zan (高砂山), Kotobuki-zan (壽山). Photo:Shojo-maru https://t.co/ZLHtkV1SRC https://t.co/QxkBWyivw1
2018-04-15 10:42:31 Cold, windy, and rainy morning at the Nagahama Hikiyama Matsuri today. Rain stopped in the afternoon. Boat-shaped Shojo-maru float’s kabuki play titled “Kumagaya Jinya” ended with this “Titanic Moment” on the bow. #長浜曳山祭 #猩々丸 #熊谷陣屋の場 
2018-04-18 13:06:50 A 3-day survey conducted in Jan. by birdwatchers at 181 locations around Lake Biwa found about 110,073 waterfowl in the lake, about 18% fewer birds than last season. Of the 41 species observed, the Eurasian coot saw the steepest decline of 33% fewer birds than last year.
2018-04-18 13:07:11 Omi-Hachiman’s mayor-elect KONISHI Osamu (59) 小西理 plans to go ahead with his campaign promise of canceling the construction of the new city hall that already started in Feb. A major sticking point against incumbent FUJITANI Eisho (71) whom he easily defeated on April 15.
2018-04-18 13:10:31 Sad that this large willow tree at Lake Yogo was knocked over by the typhoon last Oct. Famous as the tree where the swan maiden hung her clothes when she went skinny dipping in the lake. Glad it looks like the tree is still alive. Future swan maidens have to choose another tree. 
2018-04-18 13:11:03 Running since Aug. 1995, Steam Locomotive C56 “Pony” will make its final run as the “SL Kita-Biwako Train” on May 27, 2018 leaving Maibara Station at 1:16 pm and arriving Kinomoto Station 45 min. later. Due to old age, it will be retired and replaced by the D51 steam locomotive. 
2018-04-18 13:15:48 RT @LeavenworthKS: It’s been a cold few days, but our hearts are warmed by the beautiful blossoms on the cherry trees planted at North Esplanade Park in honor of our Sister City, Omihachiman, Japan.
2018-04-19 11:39:18 At Odani Castle in Nagahama, for the first time, 16th-century Shigaraki pottery pieces and remains of a drainage system were found where the Azai castle lord’s residence was believed to be located at the foot of Mt. Odani. #小谷城跡 #御屋敷跡
2018-04-19 11:39:50 The year-long NHK Taiga Drama historical TV series in 2020 titled “Kirin ga Kuru” (麒麟がくる) will be about Akechi Mitsuhide, lord of Sakamoto Castle in Otsu and most famous for assassinating warlord Oda Nobunaga in 1582. Mitsuhide will be played by actor Hasegawa Hiroki.
2018-04-19 11:40:10 To the relief of local residents, the koban police box in front of JR Kawase Station in Hikone where a junior policeman shot and killed coworker and police sergeant Imoto Akira (41) on April 11 has reopened today with two policemen on duty each shift.
2018-04-19 11:40:52 Otsu Basho sumo exhibition tourney will be held on July 30, 2018. Otsu Mayor Naomi Koshi today requested the Japan Sumo Association to allow her to stand on the sumo ring for her speech that day. She & other female mayors will also submit a formal request to the Sports Minister. https://t.co/txa57hisur
2018-04-20 12:48:36 Otsu has been selected as one of the team camps for Wales and Fiji during the Rugby World Cup 2019. https://t.co/Hal1grL8WC
2018-04-20 14:03:24 Today, NHK World spotlighted Shiga Prefecture in a 30-min. news program. They covered a wide range of topics, but I thought the castle wall builder (AWATA Suminori) from Sakamoto building castle walls in the US was most interesting. Watch it online here: https://t.co/fM4TPzyuej
2018-04-22 08:33:36 第2回びわ湖音楽祭のプレイベントの一つとして関島秀樹コンサートが近江舞子のほとり・ポトリというカフェで4月21日に開催されました。自ら作詞・作曲された滋賀の歌を披露しました。橋板の歌も興味深いでした。とても良かったです。Sekijima Hideki performed in Omi-Maiko. 
2018-04-22 08:55:58 加藤登紀子プロデュースの「第2回びわ湖音楽祭」が2018年5月20日(日)に和邇に開催されます。入場料/6,000円。前日にも平和堂 和邇店に無料プレイベントが盛りたくさん。Singer Kato Tokiko and local artists will perform in Wani, Otsu on May 20. https://t.co/B7181FDE8b https://t.co/iUTmLqYM7W 
2018-04-27 11:17:39 Repair work has started on Hikone Castle’s white plaster walls damaged by Typhoon Lan (No. 21) last Oct. Repairs should be completed by Nov. this year. 
2018-04-27 11:25:15 About 2,500 shoppers were on hand today for the reopening of the old Otsu PARCO shopping complex renamed “Oh! Me Otsu Terrace” with over 30 stores including Friend Mart (Heiwado), Yamada Denki, TSUTAYA bookstore, Can Do, United Cinemas, and Shiga Bank. https://t.co/5gMYxdB8Q2
2018-04-28 22:59:50 My article about YUtour, tour guide for foreign visitors in Shiga. Operated by MORI Seita (森 聖太), a great tour guide. #悠ツアーhttps://t.co/YYaGK7ZwAl

Shiga History Sept.–Dec. 2017Chronological History of Shiga | Shiga History May–Aug. 2018

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