The Japanese Town of Chichibu becomes the centre of attraction in every December when it hosts the Chichibu Yomatsuri with pomp and gaiety. Yomatsuri in Japanese means night festivals and this one is one of the most famous of all the other in this category in the country.
This festival has an extended history of at least 300 years and it offers homage to the town's guardian deities known as Kami. The festival is marked by the colourful celebrations, ethnic art and dance performances and a massive procession with six illuminated floats that represents the six respective Kamis.
All the action culminates with the evening parade that starts from the Chichibu Shrine with those six giant floats making way in its swinging swagger towards the town with heavy fireworks. These floats are of 10 metres height and weighs around 10 tons. The high spirited youth with festival clothes pull them in zeal and enthusiasm.
The floats are the stage where the kids perform the typically Japanese Kabuki theatre and dance to the folk beats and rhythm. The floats are designed with carvings and they are illuminated with the lanterns that give them a mystic aura.
The scene at the festival site is joyous with drummers going mad and flute music playing all the way. The friendly crowd are the added value to this festival in addition to the food stalls, beer points and the random street musicians.
The Chichibu Yomatsuri is a major festival in the Japanese cultural milieu. The purpose of this gala is to pay respect to the six deities of the Japanese town of Chichibu. The celebrations are marked by huge processions with lantern illuminated floats and a bunch of traditional performances.