Hosted by the JOC, the “Olympic Day Festa in Koriyama” was held on December 7th in Koriyama City’s General Gymnasium. This is the third time it has been held in Fukushima Prefecture this year.

Six Olympians participated in the event including Koriyama City’s own Honda Takeshi, who placed 4th in figure skating at the Salt Lake City Olympics. They teamed up with 110 elementary school students from Koriyama City to do four types of sports activities together such as tag and otama ball roll. After their activities, the Olympians held a Q&A session during which they were asked, “What should I do when I am frustrated after losing a match?” One Olympian gave them the following advice: “Reflecting on why you lost and connecting that to the next performance is very important.” The children exercised energetically and enjoyed spending time with the athletes.

The day before (Dec 6th), the Olympians also visited Koriyama City’s Kinto Elementary School to spend time with the children. The 1st and 2nd grades of Akagi Elementary School, whose school building was damaged by Typhoon No. 19, also joined.

In the school’s gymnasium, each Olympian talked about their competition lifestyle and their memories of the Olympics. They also talked about the importance of having dreams and goals and working towards them without giving up. In addition, the Olympians bonded with the children through sports activities like badminton, catch, and penalty kick shooting.

After visiting the school, the Olympians took a tour to learn about reconstruction efforts, which included a visit to the Decontamination Information Station at Koriyama City Hall and Koriyama Culture Park, which also has a storage area for removed soil.

Participating Olympians:
Onodera Shiho (soccer), Mabuchi Satoko (softball)
Tachibana Masato (weightlifting), Honda Takeshi (figure skating)
Fujii Mizuki (badminton), Yazawa Kazuki (canoeing)