The alluring of float festivals in Tokai City
History of the Floats which are designated cultural assets of Tokai City
Many of these floats were built in the late Edo period with history going back approximately 210 years. They are still carefully maintained by members of each festival preservation group and by local residents. Take a look back into history through the history of these 9 floats.
Sophisticated Technology of Mechanical Dolls
Mechanical dolls sitting on each of the 9 floats each do different things: write, do headstands, draw a bow, etc. Marvel at the sophisticated technology of the Edo Period.
The Awe of Donden (Donten)
Shafts of the front wheel are hoisted up and with the front wheel afloat, and the float is spun around with vigor. This is called Donden (or Donten) and is the finale of the float festival which is accompanied by music, and scattering of confetti from the small cabin structure on top. You’ll be overwhelmed by the energetic cheers of the float carriers.
Fantastic Night Float Parade
The Donden (Donten) of the float lit with lanterns is mesmerizing. Enjoy a scene that is completely different from the daytime. At night the floats are illuminated and the mesmerizing night“ Donden,” completely different from that of daytime, is a spectacle to behold.
The Ota Festival is held concurrently with the annual celebration of Omiya Shrine. It is a grand festival with 4 huge floats, each weighing approximately 5 tons, parading down the street with music. The highlight of the festival is Donden; carrying the float and spinning it around. The sight of the floats being spun around so many times is truly a sight to behold. Performances of mechanical dolls are another event not to be missed!
- Date First Sunday of October and the day before
- Location Omiya Shrine, Ota-machiMAP
- Groups Arako-gumi, Sato-gumi, Ichiba-gumi,Kurokuchi-gumi
- Number of floats 4
- Type of float Chita-type
- Donden area Omiya Shrine, event square in front of Otagawa Station
- Recommended spot to watch On the morning of the festival, 4 floats parade along the Ota River toward Omiya Shrine, the 4 elegant floats are reflected on the smooth surface of the Ota River, where they resemble a wide picture scroll.
Owari Yokosuka Festival
The Owari Yokosuka Festival is held concurrently with the annual celebration of Atago Shrine. Floats leave Atago Shrine and are drawn down the town’s streets; after reaching the Donten area, the floats are turned around and return to Atago Shrine. After making an offering of mechan ical dolls and music, the grand finale, called“ Daidonten,” begins. Carrying and carefully spinning the floats around and around without hitting anything, the float carrier teams compete for the honor and prestige of being the most skilled performers. At night, lanterns are hung and the night festival begins.
- Date Fourth Sunday of September and the day before
- Location Atago Shrine, Yokosuka-machiMAP
- Groups Kitamachi-gumi, Motomachi-gumi,Kotsu-gumi, Daimon-gumi
- Number of floats 5
- Type of float Nagoya-type
- Donten area West and south sides of Yokosuka-machi intersection, etc.
- Recommended spot to watch The Daidonden performance at the cross-sectionon the west side of Yokosuka-machi intersection is the climax of the festival.
Learn the History and Culture
Heishu Hosoi Memorial Hall and Tokai City Local History Museum
In the hall there is the “Heishu Memorial Exhibition Room,” where Heishu's paintings and writings are on exhibit, the “Heishu Hall,”
an information section, and the Oumeikan, a lecture hall named after the school he opened in Edo.
It is a memorial hall where you can relive the teachings of Heishu Hosoi. His words in calligraphy writing still touch the hearts of those who read them.
- 9:00 am ~ 4:30 pm
- Mondays (if Monday is a holiday, then closed the next day), end-of-year and New Year holidays (Dec. 29th ~ Jan. 3rd)
- for 28 cars and 2 buses
Heishu HosoiBorn 1728 – deceased 1801
Born in Tokai City, Aichi, he was a scholar who signicantly inuenced school and social education in the domain. He is particularly famous for being the rst principal of Owari Domain’ s Meirindo School, and the teacher of Harunori (Yozan) Uesugi, the lord of the Yonezawa Domain. He is the pride of Tokai City as one of the great men originating from the city. Tokai City has made a sister city agreement with Yonezawa City (the city Harunori Uesugi originated from). The words Heishu Hosoi sent to Harunori Uesugi, “Yunarukana yunarukana yuniarazushite naniwomotte okonawanya” meaning “Whatever you do, you must have courage” became the root of the cultural institution “Yunaru.” Heishu Hosoi is the model for Tokai City’ s character, “Heishu-kun.”
Yozan UesugiBorn 1751 – deceased 1822
A feudal lord during the mid Edo Period (1603-1868), and the 9th lord of Dewa Province, Yonezawa Domain. He restructured the Yonezawa Domain, which was on the verge of returning its land to the shogunate. He is famous for having been a prominent lord during the Edo Period.
Great Buddha of Shuurakuen
It is a designated cultural asset of Tokai City! Ever since a uddhist ceremony to consecrate a newly-constructed Buddha statue was held in 1927 to commemorate the marriage of Emperor Showa, the statue of Buddha has stood as a symbol of Tokai City very much loved by its residents.
- 2-1 Nishihazama, Arao-machi In the Tokai-shi Shiawase-muraMAP
Oumeian, standing on the hill of the Shuurakuen Park, is a tea ceremony room named after a school opened in Edo by Heishu Hosoi. How about enjoying “maccha” while looking at the garden that changes scenery every season?
- 2-1 Nishihazama, Arao-machi In the Tokai-shi Shiawase-muraMAP
Chita Shikoku Hallow Ground
The pilgrimage to 88 Temples in the Chita Peninsula is one of the famous 3 major Shikoku pilgrimages (the other two being the pilgrimage to 88 Temples in Sasaguri Shikoku (Fukuoka) and the pilgrimage to 88 Temples in Shodoshima (Kagawa).) The route consists of 88 temples in dierent areas, 3 founding temples and 7 additional temples for a total of 98 temples. Located in the Chita Peninsula, the pilgrimage route is 194 km long, and can be started from any point. Go on a pilgrimage to nd happiness and be sure to get your red stamp on your copy of the sutra at each stop!
The 82nd temple of the Chita Shikoku pilgrimage. The palace in the main hall is designated a national cultural asset as it showcases the construction technology of the Kamakura Period. The principle Buddha statue called “Ekadasamukha (eleven-faced Kannon Bosatsu),” which is not ordinarily open to the public, and the main hall are designated prefectural cultural assets.MAP
The 83rd temple of the Chita hikoku pilgrimage. The temple is impressive with countless big red lanterns decorating the octagonal Hokyoin-to Pagoda in the center. Circling this Hokyoin-to Pagoda clockwise 3 times is said to make your wish come true.MAP
The 84th temple of the Chita Shikoku pilgrimage. Statues of four heavenly kings (Jikoku-ten, Zocho-ten, Komoku-ten, and Tamon-ten) enshrined at the tower gate are worth seeing.MAP
The 85th temple of the Chita Shikoku pilgrimage. This is a convent treasuring openness and accepting all that seek asylum. Sho Kanzemon Bosatsu, which is not open to the public, is known to be the work of Dengyou Daishi and is designated a cultural asset by Tokai City.MAP
The 86th temple of the Chita Shikoku pilgrimage. Famous as the temple where Heishu Hosoi received his rst schooling. The sight of a huge camphor tree, said to be over 700 years old is simply breathtaking. Kannonji Chochin Festival is famous as an eccentric night festival with a competition to snatch oered lanterns.MAP
Historical sites include ruins such as shell mounds, settlement remains, castle remains and tumulus that are of high historical and academic value and designated as important cultural assets by the national and local government. Some of these are found in the most unexpected places too!
Matsusaki Shiseki Park
A famous ruin on Chita Peninsula related to salt making from the late Tumulus Period to the late Heian Period. The salt production system and the large amount of earthenware being unearthed attract attention.MAP
A structure from about the end of the 6th century. It has the largest scale horizontal stone chamber on the Chita Peninsula.MAP
A second house built by Mitsutomo Tokugawa, the second lord of wari, in 1666. There is a stone monument and a guide board that tells the story of the time.MAP
This is the tower of Ayame, a lady of the court who died of a broken heart after coming to this land to be with the man she loved, Ariwara-no-Narihira. Of the ve tower statues, the one that is said to be most aesthetically pleasing is called the Narihira Tumulus.MAP
The tomb of Yoshimoto Imagawa, who lost the battle against obunaga Oda in the Battle of Okehazama. It is said that the inscription “義基 (Yoshimoto)” was intended to prevent discovery by the enemy.MAP
This monument was built to honor the holy spirit of Nagamasu, who was the priest of Houkoku Temple. Many people visit the monument because of a rumor that says all wishes will come true to those who visit. Written wishes are hung on the wall of the temple hall.MAP
A famous shrine attracting visitors for the rst prayer of the year. On the premises of the Suwa Shrine is a monument inscribed with a Tanka poem about Ayuchigata, which became the origin for the name of Aichi Prefecture.MAP