Sun, Dec
06

Oji Kumade Ichi Fair

Free
Oji

The Tori no Ichi Fairs are one of Tokyo’s best-kept secrets. These “Rooster Fairs” aren’t in many of the tourist guides, but they’re a big deal for local communities. Dating back to the Edo period, the festivals are all about good fortune and prosperity for the new yearso if you’re feeling a bit down on your luck (or just want to pick up a bit more), hustle over to the precincts of Oji Shrine and pick up one of the thousands of kumade you’ll find for sale there. These ceremonial bamboo rakes are beautifully decorated, and hung with traditional Japanese good-luck charms. Stallholders give each one a special send-off, with clapping and calling out that transfers the luckiness the rake embodies onto its new owner.

Although the Oji Kumade Ichi has no fixed closing time (that we know of at the time of writing), it’s best to assume it’ll go on until late. Prices for kumade vary, but start at about ¥1,000 and go up from there. There are also street vendors and food stalls.

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