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A boxy-looking Kita-Urawa Station on the west (nishiguchi) side. Keihin-Tohoku Line.
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Kita-Urawa Awa Odori lanterns and signboard in front of Kita-Urawa Station.
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Near the train station is Happy Road. This is the entrance and one starting point of the Kita-Urawa Awa Odori folk dance festival.
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The 32nd Kita-Urawa Awa Odori was held on Sept. 5, 2009 from 6 pm to 9 pm. About 11 awa odori dance troupes participated. Most of them from Saitama.
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Opening ceremony. The festival actually started at 4:20 pm with an opening ceremony and a parade of marching bands from local elementary schools and the fire dept.
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Happy Road, the main venue of the Kita-Urawa Awa Odori. It is a short route.
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A school marching band starts off the festivities.
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Another one marches on.
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Kita-Urawa Awa Odori banner.
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At 5:30 pm, they held a short demonstration of awa odori dancing on Happy Road with the local Kita-Urawa Aho-ren dancing.
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Kita-Urawa Aho-ren. "Aho" means fool.
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Happy Road goes straight to this road which leads to Fureai Road, another dance venue and Saty shopping mall at the end of the road. The entire route quite short.
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Kita-Urawa Aho-ren starts the Awa Odori on Happy Road at 6 pm. This was the most crowded section, but even then, not super crowded. They also had chairs that anybody could sit on, though some were reserved.
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Kita-Urawa Aho-ren 北浦和阿呆連
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Lots of local children in Kita-Urawa Aho-ren. 北浦和阿呆連
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Kita-Urawa Aho-ren
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This man does a fan dance with his feet too.
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Next was Buyu-ren.
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Buyu-ren 舞遊連
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This is Niiza Kobushi-ren, from the city of Niiza in Saitama Prefecture. They had a very distinct-sounding beat. 新座こぶし連
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Niiza Kobushi-ren
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These pictures show most, but not all the eleven dance troupes who performed. I missed a few.
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Niiza Kobushi-ren
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Niiza Kobushi-ren
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Niiza Kobushi-ren perform at Fureai Road which was the worst place to take pictures. They had a canopy (see left) and it obstructs the best view of the dancers. The crowd was sparse here.
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Niiza Kobushi-ren musicians.
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This is Musashi-Aoi-ren from the city of Sayama in Saitama Prefecture. They belong to the Aoi family of Awa Odori dance troupes. Their music sounds almost the same as the other Aoi troupes.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren むさし葵蓮
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Musashi-Aoi-ren gives a very good performance. Their dance routine is excellent.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren むさし葵蓮
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Musashi-Aoi-ren performing in front of Saty, a shopping mall. Here too, it wasn't super crowded.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren at Kita-Urawa Awa Odori on Sept. 6, 2009.
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Also see my YouTube video here.
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The lighting was dark here, like most of the parade route.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren at Kita-Urawa Awa Odori on Sept. 6, 2009.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren
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Musashi-Aoi-ren on Happy Road. One of the girls lost her balance and fell. See my YouTube video here.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren on Happy Road.
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This was the brightest section of Happy Road, in front of a pachinko parlor. But the neon lights kept changing color--red, white, yellow, etc. Looks psychedelic on my video.
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Musashi-Aoi-ren
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Musashi-Aoi-ren
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Miyako-ren was also good. I have them on video. 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren 美奴連(みやこ連)
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Miyako-ren drummers.
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Awa Odori Hibugi. This group doesn't have the word "ren" attached to their name. 阿波踊り飛舞技
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Awa Odori Hibugi. "Hibugi" means flying dance. Although I did not see anyone leaping in the air while dancing.
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Awa Odori Hibugi
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Awa Odori Hibugi
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Ageo Koiki-ren, from the city of Ageo in Saitama Prefecture. あげお小粋連
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Ageo Koiki-ren pulling kites. They were good and I have them on my YouTube video here.
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Hatanaka-kikko-ren 畑中亀甲連
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Hatanaka-kikko-ren, Kita-Urawa Awa Odori in Saitama. 畑中亀甲連
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Hatanaka-kikko-ren 畑中亀甲連
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Hatanaka-kikko-ren
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Hatanaka-kikko-ren
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Finale on Happy Road. Anybody could join in and dance.
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Kita-Urawa Awa Odori lanterns in front of Kita-Urawa Station.
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Kita-Urawa Awa Odori poster for 2009. Gooddesign.
 
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