Sunday, April 24, 2016

Mikoshi - Battle Day

Before the battle begins, the Mikoshi is blessed at the Shinto Shrine and prepared for battle. Any decorations that can cause damage to contestants are removed.






Children have their own Mikoshi

The Mikoshi is retunred from its overnight stay at the mall



Sunday, April 17, 2016

Haru Matsuri & Mikoshi's




Look but do not touch

A high school Mikoshi on parade

Haru Matsuri & Mikoshi's

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Every movement of the Mikoshi is orchestrated. It is a unifying event. The group must work as one. The ritual parade's leading up to the battle of the Mikoshi's helps the group prepare for battle. It's quite a social event.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Haru Matsuri - Spring Festival

The spring festival, of which, the Mikoshi is the focal point, occurs over several days, leading up to the combat of the competing Mikoshi's, which will happen in a local park.

It is a competition in which the winner has bragging rights for the year.

The first day of the festival, after the dedication and celebration of sake, the Mikoshi's are carried to a local mall for display.

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Sunday, April 3, 2016

Mikoshi on Parade

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Haru Matsuri - Spring Festival - Starts with Prayer Offering

The local Shinto Priestess offers prayers to the god residing at the Shrine. After the prayer, ceremonial drums of sake are opened and consumed in square wooden cups. Then the Mikoshi is put on parade with music, chanting and singing.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Haru Matsuri - Spring Festival

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A Shinto tradition, this street festival culminates in a battle of the Mikoshi's. There are 2 Mikoshi's for each Shrine. One is a Mikoshi for parade. It is the one for show. The other Mikoshi is the one for battle. It is identical to the show version except it is toughened up for battle. Inside the battle Mikoshi, the gods are wrapped in rope for protection and the delicate ornaments on the exterior are removed. The battles are quite real and people do get hurt. It is not unusual for participants to be taken away in an ambulance. It is a rowdy time and pretty much everyone is drunk on sake and beer.
Ceremonial Sake

War Mikoshi

Shinto Shrine of Mikoshi



Shinto Priestess

Decorative Mikoshi