2018 Sep 5, The Tokamachi Oomatsuri 2018
Posted: 5 September 2018
Author: Amanda Marble
(everyone after dancing!)
The Tokamachi Oomatsuri (summer festival) happened this past weekend (25th - 27th August) and I had the opportunity to perform the local Min'yo Nagashi dance in the big parade with everyone from Tokamachi, including my fellow JETs. This was the first Japanese festival I had ever been to so I was pretty excited.
We started off by going to a local restaurant to get dressed in our yukata with the help of a woman I dubbed The Miracle Worker. No matter our size she managed to get us into these yukata, even when we thought there may be no hope for us!
(the finished product with Taylor Campbell, ALT Extraordinaire)
(the second dance we learned)
We danced for about an hour and a half with everybody doing the same moves and eventually looping around to see other groups within the parade. The dance moves reminded me a lot of Body Flow/Body Balance, a gym class I did back in America. The moves were so fluid and after I got the hang of them, it began to feel like meditation. I really enjoyed it. Being in the parade was a really awesome feeling of unity and I truly felt the spirit of Japan as we danced through the streets while being surrounded by different mikoshi (shrines) and niwaka (performance floats).
Below are some additional photos from the night.
Tokamachi City Hall
General Affairs Department
Policy Planning Division
Public Relations Section
3-3 Chitose-cho, Tokamachi City,
Niigata, JAPAN 〒948-4635