Tag Archives: Unagappa

Quick Response


This event took place on the banks of the Toki River in Tamiji Friday morning. From what I could see, it seemed to be a demonstration of the fire department’s typhoon/flood rescue capabilities, with people entering a mobile rain(bow?) simulator with umbrellas, rides in inflatable rafts, a cookout and Unagappa encounters.


No sooner had they done this than Mother Nature obliged with a thunder-boomer deluge of her own. We do seem to have had more storms this summer.

Safety First

Many people turned out today for the annual Fire Safety event along the Toki River in Tajimi.

Firetrucks line the streets on both sides of the river.  I’m usually working during this event, but this year had a chance to see some of it.

Tents just in front of the Red Cross offices during preparation for the event.  It’s nice to know the Red Cross is always there.

In a calm before the storm, the placid river reflects the firefighters assembled for a ceremonial spraying, pumping some of the water from the river itself.

Tajimi’s own Unagappa and other mascots were there to greet children and pose for pictures.  There were also several young women dressed up in kimonos for their coming-of-age ceremonies.

After demonstrations of firefighting and rescue techniques, fireworks and smoke were set off and hoses released water as a siren sounded.

You might be able to see the rainbow on the near side of the river in this picture.  Also, the new walkway on the bridge in the background was finally opened to foot traffic.  Many thanks to all the men and women who work so hard to be there if needed in an emergency.  Here’s hoping we all have a safe year in 2011.

Parade Winds Through Town

Today the Tajimi Matsuri parade entertained many who lined the streets in anticipation of seeing a neighbor or grandchild brave the cold to bang a drum or twirl a baton.  There were at least two Unagappas – one on a palanquin portable shrine, and this one walking at the end of a group of other fuzzy, furry creatures. You can just make out the eely tail:

Update:  I hadn’t known it was the 40th annual Tajimi Matsuri, and though I could only get a glimpse of the sign as I drove by on my way home, it seemed to say this was also the 70th anniversary of Tajimi’s incorporation as a city.  Culture Day certainly made for jammed roads.  A westbound journey on route 19 took twice as long as usual.

Festival Week After Next

The “Tajimi Matsuri” will be held Wednesday, November 3, with various events scheduled throughout the day including live music, ceramic works for sale, a trout fishing derby on the Toki River and a wine tasting festival at the Byodoin monastery. Tajimi’s own half-eel/half-sprite mascot Unagappa will be on hand, and, weather permitting, there will be a parade featuring groups dressed in historical costume, marching bands and more. The parade will be from 2 to 4 pm between Tajimi Station and City Hall, with other events at venues like Ceramic Park Mino. Tajimi Station in its entirety should be ready to finally show itself off to its sponsors (you and your fellow Tajimians, except for the elevator, paid for by JR). Mark your calendar – It all happens on Culture Day, November 3rd.