Fukagawa Hachiman Festival

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Fukagawa Hachiman Festival

They get wet at the Fukagawa Hachiman Festival. Really wet. Once every three years, the denizens of this Taito-ku neighbourhood carry a fleet of mikoshi (portable shrines) through the streets, while getting doused with water by the assembled crowd. This splendidly sodden spectacle was actually due to happen last August, but in the wake of March 11 the organisers decided to postpone it a year. The main parade takes place on the morning of August 12, following a course that starts at Fukagawa Hachiman shrine and takes the (by this point very wet) shrine bearers across the Sumida River and back again. That's just the highlight of a busy few days of festivities, however: from August 11 to 15, you can expect a variety of traditional parades and ceremonies, accompanied by everything from karate displays to an Indonesian gamelan performance.

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