- It is a regular festival of Haguro Shrine that is situated on Mount Shinobu, the symbol of Fukushima City. Carrying the biggest, huge straw sandals in Japan, a length of 12 m, a width of 1.4 m, a weight of 2 t, they will dedicate it to the Haguro Shrine on Mount Shinobu, after walking through the city's main street such as in front of Fukushima Station. Long ago, there was a great gate at Haguro Shrine. Originated from the fact that huge straw sandals were made so that they should meet the size of the feet of the two Deva kings that were settled in the shrine, it has been inherited from the Edo period for over 300 years. It is said that praying for abundant crops, domestic safety, body robustness, and so on will build up our strength. People say that since it is the god of marriage, there is also a traditional legend that love becomes accomplished if we continue praying for 3 years. Because of this, young men and women can be seen constantly. Nowadays, it is also said that miraculous powers can be expected for traffic safety, the success of entrance exams, and so on. In the shrine and the approach roads, you can see the street stall selling Masaru, a bringer of good luck, a Daruma doll, a demon-breaking arrow with gold straw, a wooden plaque and Yuzu candy that relate to zodiac signs, and so on. Many worshipers visit from midnight to next morning.
(Haguro Jinja) Gosankoku, Fukushima-shi, Fukushima
Tadami Furusato Snow Festival
- The natural metropolis of Tadami is known for its heavy snowfall in Japan and is also registered as a Unesco Eco-Park. The Tadami no Furusato Snow Festival is a major winter event held at the square in front of the JR Tadami Station on the second weekend of February every year. The snow sculptures and candle-lit roads standing in a row at various locations in the town welcome visitors in a warm and magical ambience, serving as a light for reconstruction efforts. An imposing and impressive large snow sculpture makes an appearance at the main venue in front of the Tadami Station. A variety of events such as traditional handicrafts exhibits, a portable shrine in the snow, and other rituals are also held for the enjoyment of visitors throughout the day. In the city of Yukinko, stores standing side by side serve a range of delectable local cuisine to visitors. During the fireworks display adorning the night sky in midwinter, besides launching fireworks encapsulating the hopes of people, a dynamic display of fireworks including the "Natural Metropolis Tadami Welcome Fireworks" and "Kumamoto Reconstruction Support Fireworks" which is the largest display of its kind is also launched as a finale to the snow festival.
1039, Aza-Amatsutsumi, Oaza-Tadami, Tadami-machi, Minamiaizu-gun, Fukushima Prefecture
Ouchiya Snow Festival
- Every year in February, a magical snow festival lighted up in snow lanterns is held in prefecture, Minamiaizu, a regions which has been designated nationally as an important traditional architecture preservation district. The highlight of the Ouchiya Snow Festival held over 2 days is undoubtedly the "Gojinkataihi" event held in the evening on the first day. Men in loincloths cleansed before the gods receive the gojinka (sacred fire) from an altar and then go around lighting up the snow lanterns one by one erected on the grounds. The scene is indeed majestic and profound, enveloping the settlement gently in the warm glow of the sacred fire.
Ouchiya, Shimogo-machi, Minamiaizu-gun
Aizu Erosoku Matsuri ～Yuki Hotaru～(Aizu Painted Candle Festival ～Firefly in Snow～)
- “Aizu Erosoku” is one of traditional crafts in Aizu. This festival is held to let everyone know about Aizu Erosoku in each of which craftsmanship is displayed. At the Tsuruga-jo Castle, the Oyakuen Garden and other places in the city, about 10,000 candles are lit, and Aizu is loomed like an illusion in the snowy landscape.
1-1 Ote-machi, Aizuwakamatsu-shi, Fukushima (Tsuruga-jo Castle)