The Nagoya Matsuri is scheduled for October 19th and 20th.
This is the 65th year of the festival, which takes place at Oasis 21, Hisaya Odori Park, Nagoya Castle and other locations around the city.
The Nagoya Matsuri is one of the biggest festivals in Nagoya and has been a popular event with locals since it started in 1955.
Every year it is a little different but the defining feature of the festival is the appearance of three of Nagoya’s most famous warlords Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and Tokugawa Ieyasu and their princesses along with their soldiers in armor carrying weapons. The warlords and their retinue are prominently featured in one of a variety of parades featuring over 600 people, floats, shinto music, and dance performances.
The parades take place in front of Nagoya Station, on Hirokoji-dori and on Otsu-dori (from Sakae to Yaba-cho) on Saturday Oct 19th and on Otsu-dori on Sunday the 20th.
The procession of the “Three Heroes” takes place on October 19th and starts at Nagoya Station and proceeds along a route that goes to Sasashima, Hirokoji-dori in Fushimi, and Sakae before ending at Yaba-cho. On October 20th the procession of the three feudal lords starts at the Nagoya City Hall and continues over Otsu Bridge to Sakae before ending in Yaba-cho.
Although the parades are very famous, the weekend features a variety of stage performances and other events held at Hisaya Odori Park, Oasis 21, and Nagoya Castle. There will also be food stalls featuring a range of local Nagoya food at Hisaya Odori Park.
The “Three Heroes”
1534 ~ 1582
Born in Owari Province, Nobunaga was known as a powerful shogun who attempted to unify Japan and was the first of the three heroes.
In the battle of Okehazama, he defeated Yoshitomo Imagawa and then gained control over most of Japan, however just before he completed the unification of Japan, he was executed by his retainer Mitsuhide Akechi in the 1582 Honno-ji incident in Kyoto.
1537 ~ 1598
Hideyoshi was born under the name of Tokichiro Kinoshita to a farming family in what is now Nakamuwa-ku, Nagoya in Owari Province, home of the Oda clan.
After distinguishing himself, he was called Hideyoshi Hasiba, which later changed again to Hideyoshi Toyotomi.
He took on an important role for his liege lord, Nobunaga Oda, and after Nobunaga’s death, he achieved Nobunaga’s goal of a unified the country.
1542 ~ 1616