Shiogama, Miyagi


Shiogama, Miyagi

Japanese city
Name = Shiogama City
JapaneseName = 塩竈市
Region = Tōhoku
Prefecture = Miyagi Prefecture
Area_km2 = 17.85
Population = 58,766
Density_km2 = 3292.21
PopDate = 2006
Mayor = Akira Satō
CityHallPostalCode = 985-8501
CityHallAddress = Sendai-shi, Aoba-ku, Kokubun-cho 3-7-1
CityHallPhone = 022-261-1111
Tree = Shiogama cherry
Flower = White Japanese camellia
Bird =
Coords = Coord|38|18|N|141|01|E|display=inline,title|region:JP_type:city
Symbol



CityHallPostalCode = 958-8501
CityHallAddress = Shiogama-shi, Asahi-chō 1-1
CityHallPhone = 022-364-1111
CityHallLink = [http://www.city.shiogama.miyagi.jp/ www.city.shiogama.miyagi.jp]
City

Shiogama (塩竈市; -shi) is a city located in Miyagi, Japan.

As of 2005, the city has an estimated population of 59,429 and density of 3,329 persons per km², making it the most densely populated conurbation in Tōhoku (northern Japan). The total area of the city is 17.85 km².

Shiogama's name means "salt cauldron", and this refers to an ancient Shinto ritual involving the making of salt from sea water that is still performed every July at the Okama Jinja Shrine.

The city is located about 15 km away from Sendai, and about 10 km away from Matsushima, regarded as one of the three finest coastal views in Japan. Its main industry is still fishing, and the city unloads more fresh tuna than anywhere else in Japan. Accordingly, Shiogama is also famous for its seafood, especially its sushi - the city boasts the most sushi restaurants per square kilometer of any city in the country.

The city is also home to one of the most important Shinto shrines in Tohoku, Shiogama Jinja, which is accessible up a rather tiring flight of 201 steps and has an interesting museum on the feudal and economic history of the city, including some fascinating exhibits relating to whaling.

Visitors to the city might also like to take the chance to see some of the festivals that take place each year. As befits one of the oldest shrines in Tohoku, there are a variety of different rituals carried out throughout the year. Primary among these are the Hote Matsuri (10th March) for protection against fire, the Salt-Making ritual (6th July) and the main event, Shiogama's Port Festival, held on the 3rd Sunday in July. The latter is particularly worth seeing as the portable shrines containing the Jinja's tutelary deity are paraded through the city streets and around the harbour.

Those wanting to get away from it all might also enjoy a trip to the Urato Islands, a 45-minute ferry ride out of the main harbour. Part of the Sendai fiefdom's marine defences in medieval times, they now offer beaches, watersports, fresh seafood and a generally slower pace of life. Overnight accommodation is available on the islands.

History

*April 11889: Shiogama Town is founded
*September 11938: Parts of Tagajō and Shichigahama are incorporated into Shiogama
*November 231941: Shiogama Town becomes a city (187th, nationally; 3rd in Miyagi)
*December 11949: Tagajō Village Gyūchi-ku is merged
*April 11950: Urato Village is merged

"塩竈", "塩釜" or "鹽竈"

Some people write "Shiogama" as "塩釜" rather than "塩竈". As 竈 is a furnace that a kettle (釜) is placed upon, the two kanji, although similar, are not interchangeable in regular usage. However, while "塩竈" is used in place names under the jurisdiction of the city, other places typically use "塩釜", such as JR Shiogama Station.

Although "塩竈" is the correct way of writing "Shiogama", both ways are accepted.

Although much more rarely used, there is also a third form of 'Shiogama', taking as its first kanji the old character for salt "鹽". The only incidence of this form in contemporary use is at Shiogama Jinja "鹽竈神社".

Transportation

Train stations

*East Japan Railway Company
**Tōhoku Main Line: Shiogama
**Senseki Line: Nishi-Shiogama, Hon-Shiogama, Higashi-Shiogama

Major roads

*National Highways
**Route 45
*Miyagi Prefectural Highways
**3 Shiogama—Yoshioka
**10 Shiogama—Watari
**11 Shiogama-kō (Shiogama—Shiogama-kō)
**23 Sendai—Shiogama
**35 Izumi—Shigoama
**58 Shiogama—Shichigahama—Tagajō

Notable people from Shiogama

*Kōnosuke Fuji (Lyricist)
*Miyuki Hatanaka (Mogul skiier)
*Itaru Hirama (Photographer)
*Tomokazu Hirama (Association football player)
*Masao Maruyama (Anime producer)
*Takemasa Moriya (Defense vice president)
*Katsuichi Nagai (First editor-in-chief of Garo)
*Makoto Nakahara (Japanese chess player)
*Masashi Nakano (Politician)
*Hisao Nishiwaka (Member of vocal group "BONNY JACKS")
*Kōhei Ōtomo (Musician for "HOUND DOG")
*Tadashi Satō (Mangaka)
*Hitomi Takahashi (Singer)
*Sū Wakai (Author)
*Kōichi Yamadera (Seiyū, actor, tarento)

External links

* [http://www.city.shiogama.miyagi.jp/ Official website] in Japanese


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