Arao, Kumamoto

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"Arao" redirects here. For the settlement in Portugal, see Arão, Portugal.
Arao
荒尾市
City
Arao City hall
Arao City hall
Flag of Arao
Flag
Location of Arao in Kumamoto Prefecture
Location of Arao in Kumamoto Prefecture
Arao is located in Japan
Arao
Arao
Location in Japan
Coordinates: 32°59′00″N 130°26′07″E / 32.98333°N 130.43528°E / 32.98333; 130.43528Coordinates: 32°59′00″N 130°26′07″E / 32.98333°N 130.43528°E / 32.98333; 130.43528
Country Japan
Region Kyushu
Prefecture Kumamoto Prefecture
Government
 • Mayor Jyunji Maehata (since January 2003)
Area
 • Total 57.15 km2 (22.07 sq mi)
Population (April 30, 2011)
 • Total 56,144
 • Density 980/km2 (2,500/sq mi)
Time zone Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)
Symbols
- Tree Pinus
- Flower Pyraspyrifolia
Address 390 Kunai-Deme, Arao-shi, Kumamoto-ken
864-8686
Phone number 0968-63-1111
Website www.city.arao.lg.jp

Arao (荒尾市 Arao-shi?) is a city in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan. The city was founded on April 1, 1942.[citation needed]

As of April 30, 2011, the city has an estimated population of 56,144, with 23.966 households and a population density of 982.40 persons per km². The total area is 57.15 km².[citation needed]

Arao was once a large coal mining town, but it has since lost a great deal of its population, due to the closing of the mine 11 years ago. Some schools that once housed 1,500 children have now been looking at declining enrollments down 1,000 students or more. Arao's political concentration is on tourism, to try to lure people back to this once heavily populated land. Recent hopes to pull in tourists are in its two big amusement parks, Mitsui Greenland and Ultraman Land.

One notable aspect of this city includes Shoudai pottery, an art form almost completely exclusive to Arao, involving slow kilning and under glazing. Also, the Arao nashi pear is a fruit product grown widely in this town. The pear is round, brown and about the size of a bowling ball.

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