Culture · Culture Shock · Japanese Pop Culture · Living in Japan · Pictures

Exclusively in Japan: Sweet Sakura Bear

Sweet Sakura Bear

While the characters were originally created by American Greetings in 1981 for use on greeting cards, the Care Bears helped me get through childhood. I still own the original stuffed animals and plan on keeping those for a long time and, eventually, give them to my own children. I can still remember my first visit to the dentist in which I took Brave Heart Lion with me because I needed to be brave. I would sleep with Good Luck Bear before a big event (mostly soccer games) when I was in elementary school and I almost always slept with BedTime Bear. When I was 5, my mom made me a Cheer Bear costume because she was my favorite. We went trick-or-treating together (my mom as a pink bunny) and I got mistaken for a baby bunny so many times that I started to cry.

Yes, the Care Bears and I have many fond memories.

Now, the above Care Bear is probably one that you have never seen before and, sadly, for all you none Japanese residents, may never see. Despite the franchise losing popularity, key elements like the Cloudmobiles, Caring Meter, the Cloud Keeper, and even Care-a-Lot castle are all but a memory as they have been replaced by a tree, and the fact that the current Care Bears look nothing like the Bears I have come to love, the Care Bears continue to spread happiness and messages of caring and sharing around the world.

One Bear that is doing this in Japan is Sweet Sakura Bear.

Sweet Sakura Bear enjoying Hanami and Hanami Dango

Released in 2009, Sweet Sakura Bear is shy and modest and delivers a unique message created specially to reflect the values and symbols of Japan. The heart-shaped sakura on her belly was inspired by the annual blooming of Japan’s sakura. She strives to teach that each season has its own beauty to treasure and the importance of savoring and appreciating the splendor of every passing moment.

Jun made me very happy by buying her for me♥

5 thoughts on “Exclusively in Japan: Sweet Sakura Bear

  1. I like the first picture of Sweet Sakura Bear, it looks like the original artwork. I am completely with you, the old stuff was the best stuff. Still we don’t have carebear stuff in the US now, so I always like to buy the Japan goods.

    How kind Jun is^^

    1. the first picture is the official artwork for the bear – I just did some small edits in photoshop (her name, the heart stamp, and made the color a little deeper). I miss the old Care Bears show. Glad that there are still episodes and the movies on youtube(*^U^)

  2. Hi, I am looking desperately for Sweet Sakura Carebear…May I know where or which shop in Japan that I can find it? Pls help..Thanks..

    1. Hey Leonard,

      I just checked the official Japanese website and they are no longer selling Sweet Sakura Bear:( My best guess would be to try ebay or other auction sites

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