Photo/IllutrationCharacters in “Yuri!!! on Ice” are depicted running on Maizurubashi bridge, left, in the show. Karatsu Castle is visible from the bridge. (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

KARATSU, Saga Prefecture--An exhibition tour featuring “Yuri!!! on Ice” will kick off here on April 29, bringing characters of the popular sports anime series to the protagonist’s hometown.

The fictional town of Hasetsu, the central setting of the series, is modeled after Karatsu.

The art event showcases original anime drawings, recreated costumes worn by the characters and other rare items, in addition to offering tickets bundled with perks for visitors in the city.

Visitors can also listen to follow-up episodes to the anime told by the characters.

“Yuri!!! on Ice” centers around figure skater Yuri Katsuki, who asks top Russian skater Victor Nikiforov to be his coach for the Grand Prix Final. The series aired on TV Asahi Corp. and its affiliates in 2016.

Hasetsu town is mainly featured in the first half of the story, when Yuri returns to his parents’ home used as an “onsen” hot spring inn. Sceneries with buildings identical to local landmarks, such as Karatsu Station, Karatsu Castle and Maizurubashi bridge, are also seen in the anime.

According to the city’s tourism division, about 45,000 fans, including those from 37 countries and regions around the world, visited the city in the year after the show ended, partly thanks to two collaborative projects run by the prefectural and city governments.

Russian figure skater Evgenia Medvedeva, who won silver at the Pyeongchang Olympics, is also known as a fan of the anime. She posted a picture on Twitter of herself dressed as one of the characters and has made several references to the anime.

At the Pyeongchang Games, Miu Suzaki and Ryuichi Kihara caused a stir when they performed their pairs figure skating short program set to “Yuri on Ice,” a song from the anime that was used by Yuri for his free program in the story.

Titled “Yuri!!! on Museum,” the exhibition has toured Tokyo, Aichi Prefecture, Osaka, Sendai and Taiwan, attracting more than 120,000 visitors, according to TV Asahi.

The exhibition will run until June 10 in the Rainbow Hall of Niji-no-Matsubara Hotel in the city’s Higashi-Karatsu district. The venue is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Advance tickets bundled with perks for related events held in the city cost 1,700 yen ($16), while regular tickets are sold for 1,000 yen. Each ticket costs 300 yen more at the door.

For more information, visit the official website at (