Friday, September 18, 2009

Odawara History

Odawara has a long and colourful history. Read about it:

Odawara History in a Nutshell


Laughter Yoga in Odawara

Hello Everyone,

We would like to let you know of a kind of club which is spreading like wildfire throughout the world and has now arrived in Odawara!

LAUGHTER CLUB (Laughter Yoga)

We all know that laughter makes us feel good. Laughter Yoga combines
laughter exercises and yoga breathing to give you the health benefits
of hearty laughter. It's fun and easy.
After just one laughter yoga session you can experience the benefits
and feel the difference: blood and all major organs are fully
oxygenated, leaving us bursting with energy. High endorphin levels
put us in a great mood and reduce pain. Stress levels reduce by 75%.

Come laugh, make friends, and feel great!

What to bring:

You don't even need a sense of humor, but please
bring some drinking water. You can also bring a snack or something
to share after the session if you like. Place: Odawara-Shi Shougai Gakushuu Senta- "Keyaki" (formerly
Odawara Chuo Kominkan). Shiyakusho Mae bus stop.


15 minute walk from Odawara station's WEST exit, or bus from
EAST exit. Take any bus from Platform 2. Get off at Shiyakusho Mae (the big white building). The Keyaki Senta- is just behind the
Shiyakusho (City Hall), about a 3 minute walk from the bus stop. The
bus leaves Odawara Station at 1:00, 1:15, 1:30, 1:45. It takes about
10 minutes and costs 160 yen. (There are also less frequent buses
from the west exit.)

Fee: Free (Donations welcome.)

Language: Japanese and English


Please email us your name, phone number, and the
number of people wanting reservations. Please also let us know if
you'll be bringing children.

Susie & Linda, odawaralaughterclub at

For more information, please visit:

International site:


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Odawara Lions Club English Speech Contest

日時 平成20年9月23日(日)11:00~
場所 生涯学習センターけやき

Where: Odawara`s Chuo Kominkan (Community Centre)
When: Noonish on September 23rd

I think the Chuo Kominkan has a new name now too but I can`t remember it.
It is right behind Odawara City Hall--a very big building.

The speech contest is always held in the main hall there.

Well worth a listen for you and your students. Many of the speeches are
very good, and it is a shame that this event doesn`t receive more

Admission is free!


Sunday, September 06, 2009

Minami Ashigara to close another Asset: The Cultural Centre

by Kevin Burns

Minami Ashigara City has been in trouble for a while now,
tax-wise. The local pool in Iizawa stayed closed all summer
for the first time in a long while due to "not having enough
money to run it."

For those who don`t know, it was run by students. They
were the life guards. It was a great asset to the town.
The students were presumably not paid a lot, yet we were not
able to have the services of the pool.

The latest news is that the Minami Ashigara Cultural Centre
(Bunka Kaikan) will close due to lack of funds. Apparently
the city hall has tried to sell it! As well, another rumour
is it may be destroyed. What a shame! It is a beautiful
building and a great place to enjoy music or any kind of

Fuji Film apparently due to losses is due for a tax refund
so Minami Ashigara has to pay that back.

Frankly, if I found my taxes so low, I would understand all of these
closures. But I never feel that I am under-taxed in Japan.

I get so frustrated at times, I think of running for office.
It just seems to me that so much money is wasted on inane
project like cementing the Kari River.

I don`t think Greenpeace would approve.

Paving roads that don`t need paving while leaving
roads that need the stop lines repainted--unpainted and in
danger of causing an accident.

What is the difference between the success of a tiny town like
Kaisei with a population of under 20,000 and a larger city like
Minami Ashigara with a population of 44,000? To me the answer
is good leadership.

The mayor of Kaisei is famous for being innovative and a good leader.
Minami Ashigara lacks that and we are in trouble because of it.

We need good leadership at city hall. Please someone come forward and save us!


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