Shinise Matsuri in Kuriyama !

by Kazu

A little bit earlier than scheduled, "The Well-established Companies Festival" started in the morning of April 13(Sat.). As the festival is held at the earliest weekend of April among the attractive events held in Sorachi sub-prefectural area, approximately ten thousand of people swamp to the private premises and enjoy the new Japanese sake directly from the barrel of Kobayashi Brewery every year.

Some kinds of new sake flowed like water for the visitors for free of charge and various kinds of delicious food sourced locally were sold at the stands set by the farmers association in Kuriyama Town and other private entities including the fishermen's association in Akkeshi Town on the eastern coast of Hokkaido Island, which sold grilled fresh oysters with cream of the minerals and nutrition from the ocean.
The drumming performance played by the adult group in Kuriyama Town was the opening attraction of the festival. As we set our table and chairs in front of the event site in the courtyard of the brewery, we really enjoyed the performance, sipping the new sake brewed by Kobayashi Shuzou. The junior team of drumming performance followed and played the role of "Big Draw".
The oriental traditional lion dance called "Shishi Mai" is played in this festival and on the premises of Kakuta Shrine in Kuriyama Town at the beginning of each year, at 0:00.
The story is a drunken hobgoblin let the lions dance and put them in their ease. The drunken hobgoblin is called "Shoujou" with red face.
It was much more comfortable to watch the performance in this comfortable temperature than in cold atmosphere of minus 15 degrees in Celsius.
With the sound of drum and Japanese wooden flute, the performance reached climax.  
The hobgoblin took the lions to the audience in the vanguard and delivered the welcome drink to the audience .
The new Director-general for Sorachi Sub-prefectural Office of Hokkaido Government Mr. Yasunori Yamane is on the right and the deputy, Mr. Nobuo Hayashi is on the left. The really enjoy the taste of Japanese sake from the barrel, the atmosphere of the festival and the performances of attractions.
Mr. Hayashi bought the magnum bottle of Japanese sake "Maruta" for as all. it is made from the rice crop purified 45%. It means that the rive crop is shaved to the half and boiled, fermented. It may be like a liqueur for occidental people. So nice and tasty.

Before it starts to rain, please visit the festival in Kuriyama today, April 14(Sun.)!

To be continued.

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