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Sasara and Horse Dance (Koma-Odori)

Shitagawara Sasara

Location: Shitagawara, Kakunodate-machi, Semboku City Site(s) of performance: Yamanokami Shrine, Shōanji Temple, and other places in the community Date(s): August 13–15 and 20 (no longer practiced at the time of survey in fiscal year 2012) Designation: Prefecture-Designated Intangible Folkloric Cultural Property Category: Sasara and Horse Dance Concerning the origin of the Shitagawara Sasara, it is …

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Kasuda Lion Dance

Location: Kasuda, Odate City Site(s) of performance: The cemetery and other places in the community Date(s): August 13 Category: Sasara and Horse Dance The community of Kasuda was founded by Sasaki Kuzaemon as Katsuda Village in 1517. A shugen ascetic of Haguro (in present-day Yamagata Prefecture) brought the lion dance, samurai servants’ dance, and stick …

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Shiraiwa Sasara

Location: Shiraiwa, Kakunodate-machi, Semboku City Site(s) of performance: Unganji Temple, Shinmei Shrine, and other places in the community. Date(s): August 7, 13–16, and 20. Designation: Prefecture-Designated Intangible Folkloric Cultural Property Category: Sasara and Horse Dance What is characteristic of the lion heads for the sasara dance in this area is that they have large horns. …

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Hiraoka Lion Dance

Location: Utetsu, Yurihonjo City Site(s) of performance: Hakusan Shrine, Iwaya-Shinzan Shrine, Chōkokuji Temple, and other places in the community Date(s): May 5 and August 14–16 and 22. Category: Sasara and Horse Dance According to legend, when the priest Zezan-Taikaku founded Akata-Chōkokuji Temple at Arasawa, he saw three lions playing around in the field. He created …

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Dōnokuchi Sasara

Location: Shiraiwa-Donokuchi, Kakunodate-machi, Semboku City Site(s) of performance: Sui Shrine and other places in the community Date(s): August 7 and 13–16 Designation: City-Designated Intangible Folkloric Cultural Property Category: Sasara and Horse Dance What is characteristic of the lion heads for the sasara dance in this area is that they have large horns. The origin of …

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Bōzawa Lion Dance

Location: Bozawa, Kita-Akita City Site(s) of performance: Eianji Temple, Bōzawa Shinmei Shrine, and other places in the community Date(s): August 14 Category: Sasara and Horse Dance Although it is now performed only on August 14, villagers used to perform the dance from August 13 to 20 in the village and surrounding villages and received congratulatory …

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Kunimi Sasara

Location: Kunimi, Ota-cho, Daisen City Site(s) of performance: Junkei-Jizōdō Temple, Cemetery Park, Kunimi-Hachiman Shrine, and other places in the community Date(s): July 7 in the lunar calendar (the day of annual festival of Junkei-Jizōdō Temple, August 13 and 15 in the modern calendar, and some indefinite day for the closing of the lion dance season …

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Hirokunai Sasara

Location: Hirokunai, Kakunodate-machi, Semboku City Site(s) of performance: Gosha Shrine, Inari Shrine, and other places in the community Date(s): August 7, 13-15, 17, and 18 Designation: City-Designated Intangible Folkloric Cultural Property Category: Sasara and Horse Dance The origin of the Hirokunai Sasara is unclear. It might have derived from the lion dance of the followers …

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