Yesterday I spent the whole day in Yui to have a look at the Toyotsumi Shrine and the O Taiko/Japanese Drums Festival in Yui, Shimizu Ku, Shizuoka City!
Although it is a small, if not tiny festival, it is nonetheless important as it might be the oldest living Festival in Shizuoka Prefecture since it has been held since 977!
For all its small size the district (formerly a city of its own!) is still very proud of it!
Most participants these days belong to families tied with Yui fishing harbor and the sakura ebi/cherry shrimps and shirasu/sardine whiting trading!
Such families hang a paper lantern ourside their homes as the festival is held until late at night!
Unfortunately I had to back to to Shizuoka City by 6 p.m.
Next year I certainly plan to attend the last part of the festival held between midnight and half past midnight even if it means I have to sleep in the station until the first train in the morning!
The entrance to the Toyotsumi Shrine!
Big Drum Festival!
The “torii/鳥居/Shrine sacred bird gate (you will not find them at temples)!
Note the stone lanterns!
Old style stone plaque with the name of the shrines!
A monument marking the 1200th Anniversary of the Festival erected quite a few years ago!
I arrived there at 12:00, still 2 hours before the kids’ procession, which gave ample time to talk with the locals!
This kid actually volunteered for the picture!
The well of the shrine!
For the history buffs!
This shrine was erected by a local nobleman to thank the gods for a battle victory in 971 and the first festival was held in 977!
The shrine main building!
The “mon/文” of the shrine!
This mon representing a fan was the mon of the nobleman who erected this shrine!
The main drum used for the festival!
Japanese sake is an important feature at shrines at is originally meant “Food of the Gods”!
This particular sake “Shosetsu/正雪” is produced by Kanzawagawa Brewery in Yui!
More information for the history buffs!
The fountain you will find in any shrine to wash your hands before praying for good fortune!
One of the two lion guards!
Some of the trees there are truly enormous and ancient! I wonder how many generations they have witnessed passing by!
I truly wish some of them could talk!
After the visit to the shrine I had lunch with a friend to sample the local sakura ebi kakiage.
When I came back the kids procession had already started under tight supervision as the main road is narrow and cars are a certain risk!
The kids certainly didn’t mind being hemmed in!
Cute little girls!
Adults taking part in the second procession were giving a hand!
The kids said hello to me in English! One of them even said, “this is Japanese samba!”!
Kids took turns to lustily hit the drum!
A volunteer warden!
While the kids were holding thier procession the adults had a drink or two inside the shrine!
The kids finally arriving back at the shrine after a two-hour procession!
These two young adults carried the drum for them all the time!
Some kids were still willing to hit the drum!
A fire was waiting for those sensitive to the cold!
At around 4:30 the participants got ready for the adults evening procession!
Some practice for the photographers!
The evening procession finally taking off!
The procession moving on to the encouraging chants of the older participants!
A great way to keep yourselves warm!
Coming out of the shrine street!
The procession turned into the street to greet the houses of the participatat and sponsors!
Taking turns at the drum!
Food and drinks being prepare at the abode of one of the sponsors!
Waiting for the procession!
Japanese soul food!
See at midnight same day next year!
The exact address is 静岡県静岡市清水区由比町町屋原185/Shizuoka Prefecture, Shimizu Ku, Yui Machi, Machiharaya, 185.
Get down at Yui JR Station and walk down the road on your right hand side. Walk past the harbor, turn left after Ando Dental Clinic and walk up all the way.
Held from January 1st at noon to the 3rd at 00:30 a.m.!
RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES
So Good Sushi Restaurant in Nice France
Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,
Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Ichi For The Michi by Rebekah Wilson-Lye in Tokyo, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents