Bears and Melons mix well02 November, 2010 by Yan
What is this? A melon? A bear? A bear-faced melon? It’s the Yubari Melon Bear! I happened to chanced upon this “local specialty” character goods, specifically from the town of Yubari, Hokkaido and immediately took a liking for it. It might look a little scary, but he is still lovable.
Legend says that a brown bear who once ate too many stolen melons from the farms (Yubari is a major source of melons) transformed into such a weird looking creature. The legend is of course a hoax and hence this mascot is but a marketing gimmick to promote Yubari and its melons. But lets just give them credit for coming up with such a unique character no?
Ok, my encounter with the melon bear mascot might not be completely pure and innocent, owing to the fact that I chanced upon it due to her efforts in “promoting” it. Pictures below might give you a better idea of what is the draw factor of the Yubari melon bear.
In spite of his strange appearance, Yubari Melon Bear is currently a very popular mascot. The melon bear character goods were sold out very quickly despite being a mail-order item exclusive to Japan. Tough luck if you live outside of Japan and wanted one of them.
Source of YUI’s pictures: Hisashi Kondo’s blog PostGet your favorite novelty toys and figures from Japan at PlayAsia.
Addicted to film, Yan shoots with a black Nikon Fm3a. For special occasions, Yan shoots with a Mamiya Sekor TLR.