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Video introduction of "Ogaki Festival's Tentative Events" in Ogaki City, Gifu Prefecture, Japan

This video, titled "[Full Version] Ogaki Festival [Main Ver.]" (【完全版】大垣祭の軕(ヤマ)行事【メインVer.】), shows the Ogaki Festival in Gifu prefecture.

The Ogaki Festival is a traditional Japanese festival held in Ogaki, Gifu in May each year.
In this article, we'll go over the history and characteristics of the festival in detail!

・What are the dates and location of the "Ogaki Festival Ceremony" in 2024?
The "Ogaki Festival Dori Event" is held on the Saturday and Sunday immediately before May 15 every year. 2024 will be held over two days, May 11 and 12. It will be held at Ogaki Hachiman Shrine in Nishiogai-cho, Ogaki City, Gifu Prefecture, and other locations throughout the city.

What Kind of Festival is the Ogaki Festival?

The Ogaki Festival is said to be one of the few festivals of its kind in Japan because of the presence of tamen, which are given to the feudal lords of Ogaki, as well as yama, which are used by the townspeople.

The tamen, which have unique features, such as a tamen with a puppet carousel and a tamen with children's dancing, parade through the castle town in the spring.

Let's take a look back at the history of the Ogaki Festival, now a representative festival of Gifu Prefecture.

The Ogaki Festival is a historic castle town festival that is said to have started around 1648 in the Edo Period.
Several floats were lost due to earthquakes during the Meiji Period (1868-1912) and World War II.
The nine surviving floats and accessories have been designated as Important Tangible Folk Cultural Properties of Gifu Prefecture.

In 2015, the festival was designated as an Important Intangible Cultural Property of Japan, and in 2016, the Ogaki Festival was registered as an Intangible Cultural Heritage as one of the yama (山), hoko (鉾), and yatai (屋台) float festivals of Japan.

Ogaki is the place where Matsuo Basho wrote his last haiku for "The Narrow Road to the Deep North."
In spring, Ogaki holds the "Basho Festival" in honor of the great poet.

How many yama (portable shrines) are paraded in the "Ogaki Festival Parade"? What are the highlights and features?

There are a total of 13 tents for the Ogaki Festival. Here are the characteristics of each.

The three tamen, which were given by the lord of the Ogaki domain, are "Kagura tamen", "Daikoku tamen", and "Ebisu tamen", which lead the procession.

The two most spectacular children's dance troupes are "Tamanoi-dama" and "Shochiku-dama". The children dancing in white makeup and gorgeous kimonos are a must-see.
The following "karakuri tugs" can be seen changing their appearance quickly.

The "Aioi Tento," with its fascinating "masked costume" that changes its face in an instant, the "Hotei Tento," in which a man stands on his head and opens a fan with one hand, the "Sugawara Tento," in which characters are written with a brush, the "Catfish Mountain," where an old man tries to catch a catfish, the "Sakaki Mountain," where mother goddess Amaterasu takes sakaki and bell, the "Urashima Taro," who opens a ball-shaped box, the "Atago Tento," where pigeons appear from the box Atago," in which a pigeon appears from a box, and "Shojo" in which a man sticks his head into a pot of sake.

We hope you will enjoy the highlight scenes of each of these unique puppet caricatures.

On the day of the parade, 13 dolls will parade through Ogaki City. The decoration of each teddy is also a highlight of the festival, which is made with traditional craft techniques such as metalwork, lacquerwork, and sculpture from the Mino region.

What are the "Tengaku", "Hongaku", and "Yomiya" of the Ogaki Festival?

The first day of the Ogaki Festival's ttegaku procession with traditional Japanese performing arts is called "tengaku" and the second day is called "honraku". The route of the parade changes on each day.

The "Yomiya" is held on the night of both days, and the "Yamamawashi," in which the lanterns of each tamen are lit and the tamen are rotated from side to side, is a different sight from the daytime.

During the festival, each float plays lively music with gongs and drums, karakuri dolls perform tricks, and there's music played by the hayashi bands.
The karakuri dolls can be seen at 2:05 in the video.
On the day of the festival, many food stalls line the streets, so you can enjoy eating different types of Japanese food cart snacks!

Summary of the Ogaki Festival

As shown in the video, the Ogaki Festival is an elegant yet powerful festival in the Mino region of Gifu prefecture.
Throw on a yukata and head over to Ogaki in early summer to see this beautiful, traditional Japanese festival!

【Official Website】Ogaki Festival Executive Committee

Written By
Last Updated : Apr. 29, 2024
坂崎 なお(Nao Sakazaki)
Interested in Japanese culture and traditions! I'll be introducing lovely scenery to you!
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