Asakusa Tori no Ichi

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Asakusa Tori no Ichi

Held since the Edo period, the Asakusa Tori no Ichi (open-air market) is traditionally seen as the first key festival in the run-up to the New Year. It offers people a chance to pray for good health and fortune – and they can further their cause by picking up a decorated bamboo rake (kumade), believed to bring good luck. The market is held on the day of the rooster during November, which usually falls twice in the course of the month – though 2011 is one of the rare years in which it happens three times. Note that the market gets fairly crowded after nightfall, meaning that you may not be able to get in if you turn up late.

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