NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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とうろう流しと大花火大会 Tourou-nagashi-to-daihanabi-taikai Lantern Floating and the Great Fireworks Display

Jp En

Lantern Floating and the Great Fireworks Display are the features of a special event on 16 August on the Matsubara Coast in Matsushima-cho, Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture.

These festivities began in 1950 (Showa 25) during the Bon Festival season of the lunar calendar, and were held to appease the spirits of those who had died in the war.

Various fireworks, such as water fireworks and 'star-mines' are set off against the scenic backdrop of Kehi-no-Matsubara. The Great Fireworks Display is the largest-class of fireworks display held along the Sea of Japan coast. 12,000 fireworks are set off in a dynamic show.

At the same time as the fireworks, 6,000 red, blue, and yellow lanterns are set afloat from the Matsubara Coast, while sutras are chanted by monks.

In recent years, lasers and sound systems have been added as massive settings and configurations to the festival. The pyrotechnics begin with bottle rockets and finish with special character fireworks and other elaborate fireworks.

Lantern Floating and the Great Fireworks Display create a harmony between water, light and sound. It is a solemn, even mystic, event.
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からかさ万灯 Karakasa-mandou Karakasa Firework Displays

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Karakasa firework displays are held at Otori Shrine in Tsuchiura. In these displays, fireworks are set off from 'karakasa' umbrellas made from oiled paper. These giant umbrellas measure 5m in both height and diameter.

A 100m-long rope acts as a fuse to carry the spark that sets off the actual fireworks, which are set on a box called 'yatsuguchi' on top of the karakasa. The fireworks in turn send sparks which then light a series of lanterns hung around the circumference of the karakasa. After that, the sparks are the main feature of the moment called 'te-botan' ('hand peony'), when the sparks appear to fall from the umbrella like raindrops. This beautiful display lasts for about 7 minutes. Legend has it that this firework display began as a prayer for rain by farmers who were suffering from drought.

Under the karakasa is a lantern with the words 'productive crops'. When the fireworks of the karakasa have finished, bottle rockets are fired into the night sky and the festival ends.
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