Photographer's Note

If you're planning of visiting Akita, Japan around August, a must-see event is the Kanto Festival. The Kanto Festival held in Akita City, Akita Prefecture, located in Tohoku, the northeastern region of Japan, ranks alongside Aomori's Nebuta and Sendai's Tanabata as one of Tohoku's top three festivals. It has been designated an Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property. Held annually from August 5 to 7, the Kanto Festival is to ask for an abundant grain harvest. It has become a symbol of Akita, a leading rice-growing area. During the festival, 1.3 million people throng the city streets.

In the evening when the heat of the day finally subsides, Kanto Avenue, now closed to traffic, suddenly seems to be covered with Kanto. A Kanto is an array of many candle-lit lanterns hung on a bamboo frame and each one looks like a glowing ear of rice. The larger Kanto, weighing about 50 kg (110 lbs.), rise 12 m (13.2 yd.) into the air and suspend 46 lanterns. With more than 200 Kantos, the number of individual lanterns reaches 10,000. Supporting these lights are 3,000 people, including performers who demonstrate wonderful skills. To the sound of flutes and drums, and cheered on by the districtive traditional shouts, the performers balance the Kanto without gripping the poles, and placing them on the palms of their hands, they raise them higher and higher. Along the wayside, the crowds of spectators are thrilled and impressed as the performers shift and balance the Kanto on their foreheads, shoulders, lower backs.

For more info, check out this site:

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Photo Information
  • Copyright: Jane Romero (bencher) Silver Star Critiquer [C: 14 W: 0 N: 8] (117)
  • Genre: Persone
  • Medium: Colore
  • Date Taken: 2005-08-06
  • Categories: Festivals
  • Esposizione: f/5.0, 1/6 secondi
  • Versione Foto: Versione Originale
  • Date Submitted: 2006-02-21 6:39
Viewed: 8657
Points: 9
  • None
Additional Photos by Jane Romero (bencher) Silver Star Critiquer [C: 14 W: 0 N: 8] (117)
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