Sunday, August 3, 2014

Aomori Nebuta Matsuri

This weekend's festival was the Nebuta festival in Aomori City. A series of lit up floats are pulled through the streets in a spectacular parade that also includes dancers and taiko drumming. I wasn't sure if we were going to end up going. We were getting a lot of conflicting answers to whether or not it was worth it. A lot of base dwellers were telling us that it was crowded and hot and parking was hard to find. We ended up going and I'm so glad we did!
Everything we heard was not so. Parking was easy (not cheap, but easy), we had a decent cloud-cover to keep it from being too hot, and as for the crowds, well, it was normal parade busyness.
These are the traditional outfits worn in the parade.
Unless you have reserved seating there's no way to sit up front but we found a nice park to set down our blanket and kill time until dark.
We had our preposterously expensive bells ready for the parade.
Delicious festival food!
Then it was time! I've never seen a parade like this, ever.
The floats are so impressive, beautiful, stunning even.
Dancers and big taiko drum.
One of the smaller floats. The people sitting in the front have fans and will wave them frantically at the floats to bring them closer to the crowd.
The spectators then fan the carriers of the float, at least for a second or two until they're off again.
The kids were so good but Avie was pretty done at this point so we left with 20 minutes or so to spare, which turned out to be a great thing because we got a head of the festival traffic out of there.
But not before one last stop off on the way back to the car for a bit more festival food...well for mom anyway!

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