When you think of traveling in Japan, you probably think of the bullet train. Traveling by bullet train promises a safe, fast, and comfortable journey, and affords beautiful vistas of the Japanese countryside. Passengers who disembark at Mizusawa-Esashi Station in Oshu City, Iwate, will be greeted by an attractive tourist information center. Here at the Southern Iwate Exchange Plaza, are displays on Oshu’s special products, tourist attractions, and points of historic interest.


ILC (International Linear Collider)

On your right as you enter the Southern Iwate Exchange Plaza is an introduction to the

International Linear Collider, or ILC.

             The Plaza’s ILC corner.


Panel displays and pamphlets explain, in easy-to-understand language, how the ILC works, what it might do, and the impact it will have on both our local community and global scientific knowledge.

The pamphlets, which visitors may freely take with them, and panels about the region.


      More panels, explaining about the plan for the proposed ILC.


Readers of the Kitakami Times may already know this information, but please feel free to reacquaint yourself.


Eiichi Ohtaki

Eiichi Ohtaki was a musician from Yanagawa Village, Esashi, which is now part of Oshu City. He is famous for his contributions to the city pop genre that was popular in the 1970s and ‘80s.

        A small handful of the albums he produced.


Ohtaki’s best-known records, including A Long Vacation, which features Kimi wa Tennenshoku.


In this display, visitors can learn about Otaki’s upbringing as well as lyrics from some of his songs, both those he recorded himself and those written for other artists.

By city residents’ request, for the 35th anniversary of the opening of Mizusawa-Esashi Station, his signature song “Kimi wa Tennenshoku” was adapted for use as this station’s train departure melody in 2020. While you wait on the station platform, please enjoy this upbeat tune!


Shohei Ohtani

Shohei Ohtani, star of Los Angeles Angels, hails from Oshu City. Here you can see Ohtani’s autographed ball, as well as memorabilia from when he played for a Japanese baseball team.

        Part of the display of Shohei Ohtani memorabilia.


You can also see newspaper articles celebrating his recent accomplishments.

        Panel display of articles featuring Shohei Ohtani.


The citizens of Oshu are very proud of Ohtani and look forward to his success next season.


Hayashi Floats at the Hitaka-Hibuse Festival

The Hitaka-Hibuse Festival is a fire prevention prayer festival with a history of 300 years. You can enjoy gorgeous hayashi festival floats and traditional music, as well as the tune Hibuse Matsuri no Yatai-Bayashi, which has been designated as an Intangible Folk Cultural Property of Iwate Prefecture. This festival is held on the last Saturday of April every year, but has been canceled for the third consecutive year due to measures to prevent the spread of COVID. However, next year (2023), it may be held again, albeit on a smaller scale, and Oshu residents are very much looking forward to it. For those who cannot attend in person, Minami Iwate Exchange Plaza holds a model of the children’s floats on display, reproducing the splendid appearance of the festival.

         A small uchihayashi float.


    A larger float, with models of flute, shamisen, and taiko drum players.


Specialty Goods

At the Southern Iwate Exchange Plaza, you can enjoy viewing products such as Maesawa beef and Hitomebore rice, as well as traditional crafts such as Iwayado tansu lacquerware chests and nambu-tekki ironware.

  A poster featuring melt-in-your-mouth wagyu from Oshu.


Iwayado tansu – lacquerware chests of drawers with metal fixtures – seen behind glass.


  Nambu-tekki iron kettles, in a range of sizes and styles.


While these wares are not available for purchase in the station, you are welcome to take pictures and learn about these products as you wait.


With all these interesting and informative things to see, why not plan to take a break at the South Iwate Exchange Plaza during your trip?



日本旅行といえば新幹線を思い浮かべる方も多いのではないでしょうか。 新幹線での移動は、安全、迅速、快適な旅を約束し、日本の田舎の美しい景色を眺めることができます。 岩手県奥州市の水沢江刺駅で下車すると、魅力的な観光案内所が迎えてくれます。 ここ「南岩手交流プラザ」では、奥州の特産品や観光スポット、史跡などを展示。

国際リニアコライダー、またはILC。 パネル展示とパンフレットは、ILC がどのように機能するか、何をするか、そして ILC が私たちの地域社会と世界の科学的知識の両方に与える影響について、わかりやすい言葉で説明しています。

大瀧詠一さんは、現在の奥州市江刺郡柳川村出身の音楽家です。 1970~80年代に流行した「シティ・ポップ」ジャンルへの貢献で有名。 この展示では、大瀧の生い立ちや、彼自身が録音した曲と他のアーティストのために書いた曲の歌詞を学ぶことができます。
2020年水沢駅開業35周年を記念して、大瀧の代表曲をリクエストで生演奏しました。この曲「君は天然色」は、この駅の発車メロディーにも使われますので、このノリノリな曲を楽しみながらお待ちください。 駅のプラットホームで。

ロサンゼルス・エンゼルスのスター、大谷翔平は奥州市出身。 ここでは、大谷選手のサイン入りボールや、彼が日本の野球チームでプレーしたときの記念品を見ることができます。 彼の最近の功績を称える新聞記事も見ることができます。 奥州市民は大谷選手をとても誇りに思っており、来シーズンの彼の活躍を楽しみにしています。

日高火防祭は、300年の歴史を持つ防火祈願祭です。 豪華絢爛な囃子山車や伝統音楽、岩手県無形民俗文化財に指定されている火防祭屋囃子が楽しめます。 毎年4月の最終土曜日に開催されますが、新型コロナウイルス感染拡大防止のため、3年連続で中止となりました。 しかし、来年(2023年)には規模は縮小しながらも開催されるかもしれないことに奥州市民は大いに期待しています。 参加できない方のために、南岩手交流プラザでは、子どもたちの山車の模型を展示し、まつりの様子を再現しています。

南岩手交流プラザでは、前沢牛やひとめぼれなどの特産品のほか、岩谷堂箪笥や南部鉄器などの伝統工芸品を楽しむことができます。 これらの商品は駅で購入することはできませんが、待っている間に写真を撮ったり、これらの商品について学んだりできます。