The Urban Legend of SENDAI

Sendai Shiro
Sendai Shiro
As you browse the shops of Sendai, you may see an old photograph of a smiling young man on some of their walls. This is SENDAI SHIRO, an actual person from the late 19th Century in Sendai City who became known as God of Fortune.
Owing to his intellectual disability, he spoke few words and was always smiling. Everyday, he wandered about town, played with small children and visited shops whose owners welcoming him in with warm smiles.
For some reason, any shop welcomed Shiro's visit seemed attaining great fortune in business, while some stores refused him were said to eventually go out of business. So that storekeepers began to actively invite him to their shops, gave him food and items, and even started worshipping him as the God of Fortune.
In the end, the good fortune comes from not the "god" (Shiro), but the warmth of the business owners who never forget to smile back at anyone, even at Shiro regardless of his disability. SENDAI SHIRO thus symbolizes the respect for people and such spirit is cherished by the citizens of Sendai to this day.   
His family name "Sendai" is actually the name of location, while his personal name "Shiro" means the fourth son of the family. His real name is Haga Toyotaka. This website is operated by the Haga's family. 

Keep Walking, Keep Smiling!

SMILE SHIRO accelerates the recovery process of East Japan toward happier and merrier. Come and see his smile in the city of Sendai, you will find a lot more!


Want to know more about the region?

Video source : Speak out about Sendai


SenTIA (Sendai Tourism, Convention and International Association)
As the gateway to the Tohoku region, Sendai is an excellent, walkable city which offers financial support to host conventions.

English Hotline

ENGLISH Hotline (service provided by Sendai International Center)

TEL: 022-224-1919
Information on daily life, leisure activities, etc. Interpretation over the telephone is available.

Radiation Related Data

LINE Stickers

Are you a LINE user? SMILE SHIRO's LINE Stickers are now on sale!