Celebrated to mark the end of winter and the day before spring begins, setsubun is an age-old Japanese ceremony thought to drive evil spirits from the house. Many people dress as demons and are herded out of businesses and houses by the bean-throwing occupants – it is a lot of fun and there are festivals all over Japan.
At the Dojima Yakushido, a Goma-kugenshu ceremony is performed with a traditional Goma-daki ritual in which people toss goma-gi, or prayer sticks, into the fire. In the shops and restaurants in the Kita-Shinchi area, customers and shop staff throw good-fortune beans at the demons to expel them. In some clubs, bar staff and hostesses dress in outrageous Obake costumes to add to the festive mood in the town.
The omizukumi will take place from 3pm – 9pm with Goma daki starting at 6pm and the Lion parade starting at around 6.30pm.