Nozawa Onsen no Dosojin Matsuri 野沢温泉の道祖神祭り Nagano (Jan.)
In the Nozawa Onsen no Dosojin Matsuri, a scaffold is erected using Japanese beech cut from the mountains, and a shrine structure is built. For an hour and a half, a fierce battle ensues between the villagers who try to set fire to the shrine structure, and men in their unlucky years (aged 25 and 42), who try to protect it. Finally, both sides finish the battle with a hand clap, and the structure is set alight. Flames rise high in the sky as the matsuri is brought to a close. It is a nationally designated Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property.
Babanohara, Nozawaonsen-mura, Shimotakai-gun, Nagano
About 25 min. by direct Nozawa Onsen Liner bus from JR Iiyama station on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line. Get off at Nozawa Onsen bus stop. Approx. 3 min. walk.
Approx. 25 min. from the Toyota-Iiyama interchange on the Joshin-Etsu Expressway, along National Route 117 then Prefectural Route 38.