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Public Relations

A Glance at Nagareyama Through American Eyes (7/11/2023)

Hello, my name is Amanda, and I am the new Coordinator of International Relations for Nagareyama City Hall’s Nagareyama Honcho/Tone Unga Tourism Promotion Section, as of July 2023. I am originally from San Diego, California, which is known for its beaches and tacos. I hope to become a bridge that connects the cool sights and spots of Nagareyama to the rest of the world!

One of the very first events I helped out at upon arriving in Nagareyama, was the “Ryutetsu Beer Train” event. Every year around September, Nagareyama Station is transformed for one single night, where locally brewed craft beer can be enjoyed right on the historic train tracks of the Ryutetsu Nagareyama Train Line. Having basically arrived fresh off the plane from the United States, the first thing I thought upon seeing this event was, “this looks just like a scene from ‘The Great Gatsby.’”

Just like how Japan has had a retro, Showa Era fad going on, the U.S. has been having a trend in the 1920s Prohibition Era nostalgia. A big reason for this is due to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s book, “The Great Gatsby” being required reading for all high schoolers. The book is set right during the 1920s at the height of jazz music and speakeasies, which were secret bars that were in business as a rebellion against the National Prohibition Act. The idea of secret passageways behind bookshelves and fireplaces that led to cool jazz clubs and bars absolutely fascinated all high schoolers. During the Ryutetsu Beer Train event, guests arrived at Nagareyama Station, which looked like a completely ordinary station from the front, but when they walked through the dark back entrance of the train yard, a grand event spread out before them. When I first saw this, I was absolutely stunned because this was exactly how I imagined the speakeasies and parties I read in Fitzgerald’s book to look like in real life.

At the Ryutetsu Beer Train Event, all the things that make Nagareyama a great place were prominently displayed. For example, the delicious food options that are loved by all the locals. Café&Bal Kura Gokoro’s Spicy Edamame Pepperoncino Pasta and Nagareyama Bombay’s Wagyu Curry, are just a few tasty meals that guests enjoyed. Then of course there is the locally brewed craft beer from different parts of Nagreyama and Matsudo, which was a fun way to sample different beers from areas that follow the train route of the Ryutetsu Train Line. But the most impactful thing at the event had to be the vintage trains and the train station. You could feel the history within the train yard, and with the sounds of the smooth sax music, and the emotional singing voices of the various jazz bands in the background, I’m sure every guest felt a degree of nostalgia as they walked along the train tracks. The Premium Seats and Rest Areas were also set up inside of the trains, so you got a surreal feeling like if you hopped aboard, it would take you to someplace within the pages of “The Great Gatsby.” If you find yourself in Nagareyama around this time of year, why not buy a ticket to come aboard for this one-of-a-kind experience?