Setsubun in Umeda

Setsubun in Umeda
Back in the old days, Mamemaki -- bean throwing -- would be performed by each household to chase out bad spirits and welcome in good luck. In this ancient ritual, roasted soybeans would be thrown by one family member at another who would be dressed up as an Oni, or demon.

Nowadays, people go to shrines to conduct this practice. The festival is known as Setsubun, and the event takes place on February 3rd, AKA the last day of winter in Japan.

Setsubun is a lively, humorous, and highly unique festival. Furthermore, if you believe in the old gods, it’s also rather crucial to your fortunes!

Expect large crowds at this event, with Shrine VIP's wearing traditional garb and men dressed as demons scaring little kids!

If you’re in the Umeda area, there’s a famous shrine -- Ohatsu Tenjin Shrine -- where Setsubun is performed. It's just down the road from Hotel Kinki. The festivities will start around 16:30.

You can read more about Tenjin Shrine from this previous blog post.