Location: Hanawa, Kazuno City
Site(s) of performance: In districts of the city, the open space in front of Kazuno-Hanawa Train Station, and Inamura Bridge
Date(s): August 7 and 8
Hanawa Neputa is a kind of Tanabata Festival of the Neburi-Nagashi type, which means ‘to wash away evil spirits.’ At Hanawa, large pentagonal lanterns are carried around, set on fire, and finally washed away in the river. All this is done to expel evil spirits. On August 8 in the evening, all lanterns of all districts gather at Inamura Bridge and are submerged. While the lanterns are circulating, Tanabata Bayashi (Tanabata music) is played, and at the rituals of the washing away of the lanterns, the music changes to Dai-no-Saka. The Tanabata Bayashi here is rather monotonous but characteristic with the shouts of ‘sas-sas-saah’ on the melody played by Japanese flutes.