While FC Gifu lost two points to a late Consadole Sapporo equalizer, there were plenty of other things happening in and around the stadium on Sunday evening.
As part of “Kakamigahara thanks day” we got a selection of vehicles from Kawasaki heavy industries. Although it is a Kobe company, one of the main military machine part factories is in Kakamigahara, a small city just to the east of Gifu city.
Mini steam train
As Japan is a nation of train lovers, this was bound to go down well. And it did. My friend took his kids on it several times – although I think he was using it as an excuse to satisfy his own trainspotting urges.
The Taiko drums, ranging from huge kettle drums to small handheld drums, were expertly played by the Kakamigahara Taiko drum group.
Brass Band performance
The Gifu Commercial High School brass band, the number 1 brass band performance group in the entire country, gave a brilliant performance pre-game.
Because I was at pitch level, it is difficult to show the scale of the performance. Trust me when I say it was big and it was excellent.
If anyone has seen the TV series “24”, they’ll know that when a helicopter arrives in shot it is either very very good news, or extremely bad news. Thankfully, this time, it was the former as a helicopter from Kawasaki Heavy Industries delivered the matchball by dropping it out of said helicopter. Superb drama, and one that Gifu officials were incredibly relieved went well if the sighs of relief on the sideline were anything to go by.
There are plenty more events lined up for the game next Tuesday lunchtime – it is a public holiday – against Roasso Kumamoto. It’ll be well worth being there!