Ogawa tanabata

The Ogawa Tanabata Festival was one of the few festivals on in the summer 2022. However, they didn’t have the usual fireworks display and unfortunately there won’t be fireworks again in 2023. Tanabata is the “star” festival, discerned by colorful paper streamers that adorn the streets. The Tanabata Festival in Ogawamachi (Ogawa Town) is particularly esteemed as the streamers are made out of washi paper.

Ogawa Tanabata Festival

The Ogawa Tanabata Festival is the principal festival of Ogawamachi since 1949. They started the festival as a type of PR event for washi paper, in the hope of popularizing it. The festival is on a Saturday and Sunday in late July annually. In 2023, it is on Saturday July 29th and Sunday July 30th. Before the pandemic, there was always fireworks on the Saturday night, but they have stated that – just like 2022 – there will be no fireworks in 2023.

For the Star festival, they decorate the area around Ogawamachi station. They use thousands of paper streamers. The streamers are on bamboo as are most tanabata decorations. Moreover, what makes these paper streamers special is that they are made from washi paper. Ogawa town is famous for washi paper. During the two day festival there is normally music and dance as well as festival stalls. There are usually about 150 stalls at the event. The event generally attracts about 200,000 visitors.


For future reference – Ogawa Tanabata Festival Fireworks

They normally launch about 2000 fireworks between 19.15 and 20.30 on the Saturday night of the festival. However, there are no fireworks in 2023. Hopefully, they will be back in 2024 for the first time in five years!


Information

Event: The 75th annual Ogawa Tanabata Festival 第75回小川七夕まつり

Date: Saturday July 29th and Sunday July 30th 2023

Time: from 11 am to 8 pm. (They restrict traffic from 10 am to 9 pm)

Cost: free

Venue: The main area is around Ogawamachi station. Map below.

Access

From Ogawamachi station (Saitama, not to be confused with the one in Tokyo!) which is on the Tobu Tojo and Hachiko lines.

Official website. Queries to the festival committee at 0493-72-0280.

Another (smaller) Tanabata Festival scheduled for 2022, in Saitama City.

If you are in Ogawa Town don’t miss Saitama’s longest roller slide!

Saitama’s longest roller slide and spectacular views in Ogawa

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