The annual festival of Yodohime Shrine, the Togyo and Kangyo Festival, is held on the first Saturday and Sunday in August. This festival is also called “Dango (dumpling) Festival.” This is because families in Hira region, where the shrine is located, used to make dumplings on the day before the festival and give them out to relatives or friends in the past.
The date of the festival is actually the same as the Star Festival on the lunar calendar, so decorations and lanterns displayed in the town make the atmosphere lively and gorgeous.
On the festival day, the inhabitants in Hira-chō (currently around area from Hira 1-chōme cho-me to 3-chōme) divide into 3 teams, named “Kawara-ya,” “Naka,” and “Tanohira.” Each team usually holds 3 Mikoshi (portable shrine) floats (though currently there are only 2) per team and has a parade with a Taiko and flute (Mikoshi Bayashi) rhythm. They roll the Mikoshi float up to the precinct or square and each young team will then compete and end up fighting by “throwing” the Mikoshi. As such, that locals name this festival “Hira no Nage Mikoshi (throwing Mikoshi in Hira district)”.
Visitors will be amazed to see the Mikoshi being rolled around to a dynamic drum beat, as well as men in Happi (traditional Japanese festival coats) at the festival. It makes for a fun and unique event in the middle of summer in Tomonoura.
Togyo-sai Festival and Kangyo-sai Festival (Yodohime Shrine annual festival)
Place/ Yodohime Shrine
Address/ 1596-2 Ushiroji, Tomo-chō, Fukuyama-shi, Hiroshima
Data/ 14:00〜 on the first Saturday and Sunday of every August