The Sayama City Irumagawa Tanabata Festival and Fireworks are officially one of the three great Star Festivals of the Kanto region. Sayama City have decided to have the festival in 2022. However, it is very much a festival “lite” with many of the usual elements of the festival missing, including the Saturday night fireworks.
Irumagawa Tanabata Festival
Listed in the top 3 Tanabata (Star) festivals for the whole of Kanto, the Sayama City Irumagawa Tanabata two day festival normally draws approximately 130,000 people annually. The festival is always celebrated on the first weekend of August. On the first night, the Saturday, they usually have fireworks. But there will be no fireworks in 2022. That is not the only change, more outlined below.
The festival was never scheduled for 2020 as Sayama city had decided well in advance to forego the festival due to concerns about the scheduled Olympics. In 2021, the festival once again not on, but this time due to the pandemic. Official notification. They have said that in 2022 too, if a State of Emergency is declared they will cancel the event. And while the festival is scheduled for 2022, it is only for five hours each afternoon, half the “usual”.
The city displays 140 tanabata decorations such as streamers and other paper decorations. They will be displayed in 2022 too. In a normal year, there are usually about 300 festival stalls. Normally there is food, drink and traditional festival stalls, such as the beloved “fishing” game, where you get to keep any fish you catch with a small net. However, there will be no festival stalls lining the streets in 2022, but there will be some food and drink booths by the station. Moreover, there will be no awa odori (dance), school children’s Tanabata parade or the usual dance performances.
Don’t miss! There is a great Starbucks with a terrace AND an outdoor playground just a 20 minute walk from the festival. Sayama Inariyama Park and the Sayama City Museum are also within walking distance from the station / festival.
Irumagawa Tanabata Information
Date: Saturday August 6th and Sunday August 7th
Time: In a “normal” year the festival is on from 11 am to 9.30 pm on both the Saturday and Sunday. The fireworks start from 7.30 pm on the Saturday night. However, in 2022, the festival is on from 3 pm to 8 pm, on both days.
Access: Around the west exit of the Seibu Shinjuku Line Sayama shi station
Other Tanabata Festivals currently scheduled for 2022
- Omiya Nisshin Tanabata Festival in support of the Ukraine
- One of the principal Star festivals: Ogawa Tanabata Festival
Sayama Irumagawa Festival information initially published in 2016 and updated annually. Last update June 2nd 2022.