Toei-Town Hana Festival (Toei-Town, Nakashitara)
Date : 12/03/2022 - 12/04/2022
A Hana Festival in Accordance With the Shinto Legends
Held annually from November to March at several locations of the Okumikawa area, the Hana Festivals are an ancient tradition of over 700 years that have been appointed as Important National Intangible Cultural Folkloric Heritages. Among them, the one at Nakashitara has strong Shinto religious colors. Besides continuing to carry those traditional ritualistic customs based on Shinto legends, the leading demons properly go by the names of "Sakaki-Oni" (Saruta-Hiko-no-Kami), "Yamami-Oni" (Susa-no-O-Mikoto) and "Mokichi-Oni" (O-Kuni-Nushi), major gods among Shinto lore. In one of the numbers performed, there's even a representation of the mythical tale of Tensho-Daijin (Amaterasu O-Mikami) concealing herself inside the Ama-no-Iwato cave and the ensuing parade of dancing gods engaged in convincing the peeved goddess out, which is known as "Iwato-Biraki," or "Opening of the Cave."