On Saturday August 8th I went to a fire festival in Oi with Gustsvo, Kalen, and Rosie. Oi is located at the southern most part of Fukui prefecture. We drove from Sabae and parked at a motorcycle garage because some other ALTs were friends with with the owner. We walked over to the festival on a road that lined the beach/Bay Area and entered the festival area that was filled with food stands and people. Some Japanese people wear traditional yukatas to these events and others where normal clothes. I tried sweet potato fries covered in sugar and a giant fried shrimp stick. Both were delicious. The first part of the festival was dancing followed by a parade of people carrying flame torches. The torches were thrown into a pit as each person reached the end of the parade. Then there was a taiko drum concert where 20 people were on stage playing taiko drums. After that we were closer to the fire part and fireworks. They lit this huge wooden and straw contraption and many people worked to pull it up off the ground using ropes. Once off the ground this tower of fire hovered over the edge of the beach by the sea and the people supporting it made it turn in circles causing the fire to grow. Eventually it was dropped back down and pur out. Then a little later we enjoyed the best fireworks show is ever seen. Each set of fireworks was set to a Japanese jpop or anime song- except one random American song. One song was http://youtu.be/VyKLQXOj0ts
After the fireworks we headed out but waited a bit for traffic to lessen. It was a fun festival show.