FESTIVAL September 2023

Sep. 1 BOSAI-NO-HI (Disaster Prevention Day) 防災の日

Disaster Prevention Day was established in 1960 in order to remind us Japanese of the serious consequences of disasters caused by typhoons, tidal waves, earthquakes, tsunami etc., and to prepare ourselves to cope with them. The week from August 30 to Sept. 5 is called Disaster Prevention Week, during which disaster drills are held in many districts. It is also a time to make sure we have emergency supplies in our homes and that we know where the closest evacuation center is.


9:00-17:00 (closed on Tuesday) at GALLERY SHIROKAWA

Shirokawa-cho, Seiyo City 西予市城川町

The national exhibition of paintings on kamaboko (fish-paste) boards started about thirty years ago. This year 6,355 paintings were sent from all over the country and abroad. The painting which won the first prize this year is the one titled Konosato ni oi wo sadamete (I have decided to spend my old age in this village.)
この里に老いを定めて. It was painted by Kunimitsu Mitsue from Yamaguchi prefecture showing her old father transplanting rice seedlings carefully one by one in the paddy field by hand.                                 
(Tel. 0894-82-1001)

June 1-Sept. 20 UKAI (Cormorant Fishing) on the Hiji-kawa (river) Ozu City

In Japan the tradition of fishing with cormorants goes back at least a thousand years. In Ozu it started as a tourist attraction in 1957 and now the Hiji-kawa is one of the three most famous ukai spots in Japan, including the Nagara-gawa in Gifu Prefecture and the Mikuma-gawa in Oita Prefecture. The fishing is done in the evening from a boat called u-bune, which is lit by torches as it sails down the Hiji-kawa, the river that runs through Ozu. Cormorant fishermen called usho beat the sides of the boats to encourage trained cormorants to catch fish. They are drawn by long strings attached to rings around the birds’ necks, which prevent them from swallowing fish. When a cormorant makes a catch, a fisherman pulls the bird in and has it cough up the fish on the boat. You can watch from special sightseeing boats called yakata-bune. You can order a bento to eat on board or just ride the boat and watch, and some hotels offer a special ukai package. Prices range from \4,000 to \12,000, depending on your plan.

You need to make a reservation at Ozu Machinoeki Asamoya (Tel. 0893-57-6655).

It will be canceled if the weather is bad.

Transportation: Take an Iyotetsu bus bound for Yawatahama from Shieki, gate #4, and get off at Ozu-honmachi bus stop, a 90-minute ride. Or take a JR express train from Matsuyama and get off at Ozu, a 40-minute ride. From the station take a taxi or walk for 30 minutes.


Sept. 2 YUYAKE (Sunset) PLATFORM CONCERT  16:50-19:10 

At JR Shimonada station in Futami-cho, Iyo City 伊予市双海町

A music concert is held on the platform of JR Shimonada station. The station is very close to the sea, and you can enjoy a beautiful sunset, as well as nice music.



Imotaki 芋炊き in Ehime

In Ehime prefecture about this time of the year we have a tradition of eating imotaki, a kind of stew with taro, chicken and various ingredients. We enjoy eating and chatting with our families, fellow workers, and friends outdoors, usually by the river side.

★Deai no imotaki

Under Deai-bashi 出合橋下, on the right side of Shigenobu-gawa                                                                         重信川river side in Matsuyama city      Tel. 089-989-5506

Details of the event have not been announced yet.


★Goshikihama kangetsu (moon viewing) imotaki

Goshikihama 五色浜Seaside Park in Iyo city            Tel. 089-982-0360

Details of the event have not been announced yet.

★Welpia-Iyo imotaki

Welpia-Iyo in Iyo city              Tel. 089-983-4500

Details of the event have not been announced yet.


★Kawauchi imotaki     Shigenobu-gawa river side in Toon city   Tel. 089-966-5288

Details of the event have not been announced yet.

★Ozu no imotaki

Nehoji-temple 如法寺river side in Ozu city            Tel. 0893-24-2664

Near here you can see Garyu Sanso, which is designated as a National Important

Cultural Property. You need to make a reservation as a group of five or more members.

Details of the event have not been announced yet.

Tsukimi 月見 or Kangetsu 観月 (Moon Viewing)

Autumn is the season of moon viewing. Mangetsu, the full moon (harvest moon) in autumn is the largest and clearest of the year and so it is special in Japan. We call it Chushu no meigetsu 中秋の名月 (the full moon of August 15th by the lunar calendar). This year the full moon is on the night of September 29th. In many homes, a small table is set on the south side of the house where the moonlight pours in. On the table susuki, Japanese pampas grass, which is said to invite the gods, is arranged. Anything round like the moon, such as tsukimi dango, sweet dumplings, edamame, green soybeans, grapes or satoimo, taro, is offered. It is said that the custom of moon viewing was introduced from China in the 8th century. In the Heian era (792~1180) the imperial court appreciated the beautiful moon and competed in composing waka poetry. In the Edo era (1600~1867) this custom spread among common people. The autumn season is also favored because of the cooler evenings when singing insects give full voice amid the tall autumn grasses and flowers.

Sept. 18 KEIRO-NO-HI 敬老の日 (Respect-for-the-Aged Day)  National Holiday
Respect-for-the-aged day was instituted in 1966 as a national holiday to express thanks and respect for older people and pray for their health. In Japan, as in China, we celebrate their longevity as well as their health on the 60th and 70th birthdays. We have even more celebrations for ages 77, 88 and 99 because double numbers are favored in the belief that luck also doubles in those years.

Sept. 23 SHUBUN-NO-HI 秋分の日 (Autumn Equinox)  National Holiday

Shubun-no-hi is the central day of Higan week (20th – 26th). According to Buddhist custom, during the week people visit their family graves, clean them and offer incense and flowers. It is believed that on this day one can meet one’s ancestors. The symbol flower of Higan is higan-bana, a cluster amaryllis that blooms at this time in the fields. It has no leaves at first, just flowers, and the root is poisonous.


In Yokaichi, Uchiko-cho 内子町八日市

To appreciate the full moon, a moon viewing festival is held in Yokaichi Gokoku Important Traditional Building Preservation District (八日市護国重要伝統的建造物群保存地区) in Uchiko. Along the streets houses built more than one hundred years ago are lit by andon, lanterns made of green bamboo hung in front of the houses, and visitors enjoy strolling on the long autumn evening.

Details of the event have not been announced yet.