Mount Shinobu Procession of Dawn

 

Overview

The Fukushima Waraji is the symbol of Fukushima City. It is enshrined at Haguro Shrine on Mt. Shinobu, and at 12 meters long, 1.4 meters wide, and weighing 2 tonne (it takes about 100 people to carry it), it is the largest straw sandal in Japan. During the Mt. Shinobu Dawn Procession (or Shinobu Sanzan Akatsuki-mairi in Japanese) the waraji is carried past Fukushima Station, through the city center, and up Mt. Shinobu to Haguro Shrine.
Many years ago, there was a gate with a large Nio statue guarding the entrance to Haguro Shrine. It is said that the giant waraji was made to fit the feet of this Nio statue. The festival has been held for more than 300 years.
People pray to the waraji for a bountiful harvest, families’ safety, and health. It is also common for people who suffer from leg and feet related injuries and disabilities to pray for good health. It is also popular with young people, because it is said you will find your true love if you pray for 3 years in a row. It is also said to help with traffic safety and for passing exams.
The stalls in the area around the shrine sell a wide range of charms, trinkets, and candy including daruma, golden waraji, ceremonial arrows, zodiac figurines, ema. They are open from midnight until early morning on February 11.

2018 Event Details

— Dates —
Saturday February 10, 2018
Sunday February 11, 2018
— Waraji Parade —
Saturday February 10, 2018
Parade Start: 9:00 AM
Max Fukushima: 11:10 AM
Fukushima Station East Exit: 11:30 PM
Kuronuma Shrine: 2:20 PM
Haguro Shrine: 3:00 PM
Note: The Children’s Parade runs from Max Fukushima to Kuronuma Shrine (11:10 AM ~ 2:20 PM).
Note: The waraji parade and dedication ceremony are only on February 10.
— Additional Events —
6th Annual Fuku-Otoko Fuku-Onna Race
Saturday February 10, 2018
Registration: 6:30 PM
Opening Ceremony: 7:30 PM
Race Start: 8:00 PM
Note: Application deadline is January 22 (CLOSED).
Enquries: Junior Chamber International Fukushima Branch
TEL: 024-521-1635
HP: http://f-247jc.jp/
Fukushima Gokoku Shrine
Sunday February 11, 2018
Kohakuame (red and white candy) for the first 100 visitors.
— Access —

Car: Temporary Parking Available at the base of Mt. Shinobu
(+30 min hike up Mt. Shinobu)
Bus: 100 yen
7 min (+30 min hike up Mt. Shinobu)
Route(s): Momorin City Loop 2 (市内循環ももりん2コース)
From: East Exit Bus Stop No. 9
To: Fukushima TV (福島テレビ)