Jun 15, 2011

A Festival to Commemorate Ono-no-Komachi Was Held in Yuzawa City, Akita Prefecture

Besides the high quality of food and energetic festivals, Akita is known for beautiful women. The fame derives from the fact that Akita is the birthplace of Ono-no-Komachi(小野小町), who was one of the six famous waka poets of the Heian Era (9th century), whose beauty was portrayed in many old literatures; Even after a thousand years, the legend of her intelligence and beauty has been the symbol of the traditional Japanese women.

The annual festival was held to commemorate the birth of Ono-no-Komachi and to present the Miss Komachi-musume (小町娘)pageants of this year.

This festival is held in Ono area in Yuzawa City (湯沢市小野)on the second Sunday of June. This year it was held on June 11 and 12.

The 44th Miss Komachi-musume pageant are young women ranging from 21 to 26 years old, who either live or work in Yuzawa City.

The main festivity was on June 12th, the seven women were dressed up in kimono and Ichime-gasa (市女笠) hat and appeared on the stage in quiet manners. In front of Komachi-zuka(小町塚)where Komachi was said to be born, the seven women in the glamorous costumes stood in a line, and each presented a waka poem by Ono-no-Komachi. They wrote the poem on a tanzaku strip and dedicated to the statue of Ono-no-Komachi. Their elegant postures in slow movement mesmerized the gathering crowd.

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