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Toyohashi City , Aichi Related category:
Akumi Kanbe Shinmeisha -The Oni Matsuri Festival    



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Entire story: 29 minutes
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The Toyohashi Oni Matsuri (ogre festival) is the annual festival of Akumi Kanbe Shinmeisha Shrine in Haccho-dori, Toyohashi City, Aichi Prefecture. It is a Shinto event that has been carried on ever since the Heian period (794-1192) and is now performed on February 10-11 every year. February 10 is the eve of the festival and the event begins with an iwato no mai dance and a blue ogre goes round the town. On February 11, the main festival begins at around two oclock in the afternoon with Shinto events in the precincts of the Shrine. The famous "raillery between the red ogre and a tengu" is the topic of the dengaku (rustic harvest celebratory dance) depicting the scene in which the devastating god (the red ogre) who appears at Takamagahara (the dwelling place of the gods) is chastened by the god of military arts (tengu). This is designated a National Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property. The red ogre who has been chastened by the tengu and has now repented, goes out to the parishes, scattering tankiri ame (boiled sweets) and powder for expelling evils, together with many young men acting as guards. The belief goes that if you are showered with this powder, you will not become ill during the summer.

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