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Visit to Iruma city`s famous Mandou Festival


October 2018

Place of visit : Iruma City

Occasion of visit: Mandou Festival (万灯祭り)

Date : 27th October, 2018

Nearest station: 8-10 minutes by walk from Iruma-Shi Station


My 8th visit since I have become the Love Saitama Ambassador was to Iruma City`s Mandou Festival. This festival was going to be held on the 27th and 28th of October for 2 days however due to personal circumstances I could only attend this festival on the 27th alone.

The way to this festival was quite easy , I had to get off at Iruma station first. Then I had to walk in the direction of the main road, as shown in the picture below. The main road which is slightly sloping upwards, is very easy to spot. You will see a convenience store ( I think it was a Family Mart) to your right as you gradually make your way upwards.




Keep walking in the direction of the arrow until you see what I have posted here in the next picture. Although I shall write this article in present tense, keep in mind that this festival is not held everyday so you might want to search out beforehand for yourself before going here.


As you can see for yourselves from the next picture , the road was kind of crowded of on that day since many people had seemed to prefer using their own vehicles as a means of transportation. I would only recommend this form of transportation to people who have kids and wish to go with families, since making kids walk for 10 minutes from the station while going, and after you are done sightseeing will be pretty troublesome. But for couples, people who wish to go alone, the train will be your best bet since the road will be crowded in the evening , as well as in the morning. Furthermore, if you love drinking alcoholic beverages and end up pretty drunk on that day , it could be better if you go by walk from the station.






As you can infer from the above picture, a huge board which obstructed the path of vehicles was kept in between the road , exactly the point ahead of which many food-stalls and games awaited me!




As you can see, I treaded along many food stalls and even came across this radio jockey who was talking live on a radio broadcast.I sincerely wished that they would stop and interview me, but again that was just my narcissism showing it self again.(chuckle)






This guy in the above picture even was ready to pose for my picture, after he learnt of the fact that I was the tourism ambassador, and this was going up on the tourism boards website.




The Niku-man was the most cheapest thing I had seen the whole day within the festival location premises. 100 yen!? That was a price you could never imagine getting a simple chewing gum at , let alone meat.Then came the 山車(Dashi) experience , on which there is a huge cart on which I was told to go inside and played the drums along with two other students, who had also come on a study trip to the Mandou festival. I enjoyed playing the drums with them as well!




I also took a stroll in my break , which I had been given for a generous span of 1 hour. I talked with many people who invited me to drink sake,日本酒, but due to my weak tendency with alcohol and Japanese sake, on top of the fact that I had come there for work, I opted for a chilled beer instead.




I also met my 2 friends again , while taking a stroll and we clicked a picture together with the person who I shared a beer with. I hope they don’t mind me posting their picture, since they took pictures of me on their phones as well!




Then lastly came the Omikoshi (お神輿)experience which also happens to be my favourite festival here in Japan , in which you are supposed to carry a deity upon your shoulders and while raising the cry of `Wasshoi!` simultaneously . This came later in the evening , where everyone had become slightly tipsy already due to the alcohol kicking in . Everybody seemed in a great mood.




So basically the Omikoshi taiken brought and end to my visit here at the Mandou festival.

After that , I had another cold beer at another food stall with some deep fried sausages by which I ended food-eating spree at Iruma city and went home.