Monday, July 24, 2017

Ogionsa 2017, July 23

The main parade runs on Sunday, with the first group of shrine carriers being introduced at 11:30 AM and starting out on the route along Streetcar Street in Tenmonkan. I didn't get to sleep Saturday night until 2:30 AM, and didn't get up until 11:30 AM. Meaning that I didn't get to Ogionsa until about 1 PM. However, the event consists of people carrying shrines from the west end of Tenmonkan down to Izuro street, pausing in front of a review stand with some politicians that nod solemnly at each group one at a time, and then turning north to go a few blocks in the direction of City Hall, and then back. In with the shrines there are groups carrying tall poles with umbrellas at the top, wagons with musicians or dignitaries, a horse and rider, a tengu, and a couple taiko groups. Every year it's the same, so it's not really necessary to hang around and watch the entire thing from beginning to end (the streets clear to allow cars to drive through again at 3 PM) unless you know someone in the parade.

The tengu.

The horse and rider. The parade had stopped for a break as the above taiko group played, and the horse's handlers gave him water to drink, and splashed him down with to keep him cool.

One of the pole carriers.

The children's musicians wagon as featured in Central Park yesterday.

The local dignitaries.

And the centerpiece of Ogionsa, "Hime-sama" (the Princess).

The temps are were in the low 90's, and those heavy kimonos are not pleasant to sit in. One of the retainers stood beside the cart and fanned the two women all the time, and I had to take 10 photos before I got one in which the fan wasn't in the way.

And, one of the bigger shrines.

I've recorded past Ogionsas before, and there wasn't anything really new enough to justify shooting more video this time. Except for Drum Team Iki, pictured here. They were the closing act before the streets opened to through traffic. I've seen them before, too, but this was one of the better opportunities to record them, so I did.

I didn't go back to Central Park, although in retrospect I should have, just to see if the stage was still set up from the day before. Instead, I went back home to get out of the heat. There were fireworks at 6 PM to indicate the festivities were over, so maybe there was still something going on at the park. As it was, I was happy to be indoors again.

It was fun seeing Ogionsa again this year, and there did seem to be a few more performers than last year, although there were almost no street vendors, and the crowds were at least half the size they were when I first came to Kagoshima. Next up is Obon Yasumi, the 1 week holiday period when people go back to their family home towns to pay respects to their dead ancestors, the second week of August. And there should be a big fireworks display at the end of August down at Dolphin Port. But, no other festivals until Ohara in November.

Otherwise, a quiet weekend.

Direct youtube link

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