Sunday, August 14, 2011

Kuromatsu Matsuri


A couple of weekends ago was one of my favorite matsuris at Kuromatsu, a fishing village on the coast not far from here.

I usually experience the matsuri from one of the flotilla of boats that take part, so this year for a change I thought I would see it from the land.

The matsuri takes place on the beach in front of the local shrine....


Around 5 in the evening the mikoshi is brought down to the beach......


It needs to be taken out to a small uninhabited island offshore where the honden of the shrine is located so that the goddess can be transferred into it and brought back to the beach for the matsuri.....


The boat used to carry the mikoshi, priests, and musicians, is a purpose built boat just used for this annual trip.


Once all are onboard the boat joins a flotilla of fishing boats that will escort it out to the island and back....


but first all the boats do three circuits of a small outcropping of rocks a few hundred meters offshore on which have been placed 2 small pine trees with a bamboo crosspiece to for a natural torii...


Then everyone heads out to the island to pick up the goddess....


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