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Since December 2018, Pokémon characters have slowly been added to Japan’s public utilities in the form of manhole covers. Throw in Pokémon GO’s popularity and the decision to make each lid a PokéStop, and you have a nice little scavenger hunt that involves seeing the artwork in person.

2020’s first set of Pokémon manhole covers will be installed throughout the Tottori Prefecture. This area is also home to two Pokémon ambassadors, Sandshrew and Alolan Sandshrew, who have been promoting the area and its sand dunes since December 2018. Besides attending events and having special merchandise made in their honor, they now get to be featured in 14 different manhole covers placed throughout the area. These covers will also receive special PokéStops in Pokémon GO, where inevitably we’ll see AR-photos of Sandshrew and Alolan Sandshrew posing nearby. 


All 14 designs have Google Map data presented by Tottori’s site for the Sandshrew duo, as well being added to the Poké Lids site that features information of all Pokémon decorated manhole covers throughout Japan. 


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Written by Jennifer Burch

Illustrator, designer, writer and big Nintendo geek, you can find Jennifer with an N3DS within reach 24/7. As the oldest of three, she has survived many Mario Party, Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart sessions intact in addition to getting her brothers hooked on some really weird games. (Cubivore anyone?)