October 28th is Gunma Citizen's Day. The purpose of this day is for Gunma citizens to learn more about the history of Gunma and enhance their sense of autonomy to create a better community.
Gunma Citizen's Day was established in 1983 when two nationwide sporting events were held successively in Gunma. One was the 38th AKAGI Kokutai or the National Athletic Meet, and the other was the 19th National Athletic Meet for the Physically Handicapped. There was a growing public awareness among Gunma citizens as an independent citizen of Gunma Prefecture, and as a result, the prefectural government decided to commemorate the day as its citizen's day and has been observing it ever since. This year, we are going to celebrate the 27th Gunma Citizen's Day.
So, what will happen on Gunma Citizen's Day? Public schools will be closed, and free admission to prefectural/municipal facilities will be offered. Each of the 35 municipalities in Gunma will offer its own Citizen's Day events and/or services not just on this day only but also over the period of one week to a month surrounding the day. For specific information, please visit the website of the Gunma Prefectural Government at http://www.pref.gunma.jp/01/c0110031.html
Now, let's revisit the history of Gunma Prefecture for the occasion. How was our prefecture established and when? In 1871, the Meiji Government abolished feudal domains and instead put in place prefectures to enhance centralization of power. At that time, there were nine feudal domains in Kozuke, an old name of Gunma. Each of these domains became a separate prefecture. Three months later on October 28, eight of these nine prefectures were consolidated into one to form the first Gunma prefecture. This is the reason Gunma Citizen's Day is held on October 28.
Contact: 027-226-2262 (Kenmin Seikatsu Ka or Citizen's Living Section, Gunma Pref. Gvt.)
List of services/events in PDF file
(Effective September 2011)