The Shinjo Festival of Shinjo in Yamagata Prefecture has a history of more than 260 years. It is held over three days from August 24 to 26 every year. The main event is the festival float event held on August 24 and 25. This event will intoxicate you with the harmony between the gorgeous festival floats and the soul-stirring music. It has been registered as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage as a Japanese mountain, festival float with spears and stall event.
The festival floats are made on a town-by-town basis. They compete over their skills. The high level of these will astonish you. The 20 gorgeous festival floats with themes such as historical stories, legends, noh plays and kabuki plays set out from each town and parade toward the main street. The festival floats are lit up on the night of August 24. This produces an appearance that is completely different to that during the day. This world of mysterious profundity created by light and shadow will lead you to the world of a historical picture scroll like a dream.
Do you want to enjoy the festival floats up-close at leisure? If so, you can watch them in the paid seats set up in the ABIES meeting place in front of Shinjo Station. You can see all 20 festival floats in this place. Admission is on a first-come, first-served basis. Therefore, we recommend you book in good time.
Other events are also held at this time. There is a traditional portable shrine procession and an elegant deer dance performed on the site of Shinjo Castle. The entire city is wrapped in enthusiasm during the festival period.