Namahage – Akita’s New Year’s Ogres

泣く子はいねがぁ / “Are there any crybabies here?” may not be something you want to hear shouted through your door on New Year's Eve, but the people of Akita Prefecture, specifically Oga Peninsula, feel differently. The Namahage / … [Read more...]

Onbashira: The Japanese Festival Where You Ride Down Mountains On 20,000lb Logs For Some Reason

Does riding down a hill on top of a giant log at high speeds sound a little bit dangerous to you? Good. Then you'll probably want to be in the audience if you ever make it to the Onbashira-sai festival, held every six … [Read more...]

It’s The 63rd Annual Sapporo Snow Festival This Week! Who’re You Rooting For?

Japan is known to for their bizarre and over-the-top festivals. A few that come to mind are the 裸祭り (はだかまつり, Naked Festival), the かなまら祭り (かなまらまつり, Penis Festival), and the 御柱 (おんばしら, festival with the extreme log … [Read more...]