Noheji Town Festival

Last week Julie and I had the opportunity to observe the Noheji Town Festival.

Thursday Night

On Thursday neighborhood groups congregated at the town shrine in traditional festival clothing while playing music with wooden flutes, hand cymbals, and taiko drums.  After a few minutes of playing these instruments and singing, a priest came out of the shrine to essentially bless the neighborhood.  One of the people in the town told me it may also have symbolic implications for ensuring a good harvest in this heavily agricultural region.

There were also vendors set up at the shrine selling food, toys, and souvenirs.

The force is strong in this one...

Friday

On Friday the neighborhood groups came out again for a parade that may or may not have origins with Noheji’s former trade connection to Kyoto.

Getting ready.

Getting ready.

Saturday

Residents of Noheji and the surrounding area were treated to a fireworks display by the beach.

Sunday

On Sunday the neighborhood groups returned to the shrine for one last day of music, food, and tradition.

Look for the full Flickr set in September.

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