The Aizen Festival is touted as the first major summer festival in Osaka of the year. Along with Tenjin Festival and the Sumiyoshi Festival it’s also known as one of the three big Osaka festivals. Known colloquially as “Aizen san” (the other 2 big festivals get the same treatment) the festival takes place in and around Aizendo temple. One of the big draws of the festival is the Hoekago Parade on June 30th in which a “geisha” (a beautiful young woman – not the elaborately made up figure you’re imagining) is carried aloft in a basket. “Hoekago” literally means “blessed treasure basket”. The parade participants chant “ho-e-ka-go” while carrying the young woman aloft.
This event was significantly reduced from 2019 due to “unfavorable behavior”, and due to covid-19 was canceled in 2020. For 2021, it seems to be going ahead, but has been shortened from 3 to 2 days.
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