JAPAN PHOTOS by Philbert Ono

*Be sure to wear a mask when in crowds.


Most viewed - Mizuho 瑞穂町
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Manhole at Mizuho, Tokyo.97 views
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Mizuho, a small town in western Tokyo, holds its annual Hina Matsuri Doll Festival called Mizuho no Tsurushi Kazari, or Hanging Decorations of Mizuho from mid-February to March 3. 35 views
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Inside the kura storehouse, gorgeous hina doll display. Besides the dolls, there is kimono and more stuff on the side walls (not pictured). Notice the snakes in the foreground.34 views
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Closeup of hanging decorations. Popular are the Oriental zodiac animals. But they also have other stuff like goldfish, birds, etc. They are made to pray for the safety, healthy growth, and good marriage of girls (usually the oldest daughter).32 views
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The venue is an old Japanese house called Koshinkan (耕心館), originally built in the late Edo Period by a rich farmer. Later it was occupied by a shoyu maker (soy sauce) and then a silk grower. It's now owned and used by Mizuho as an event space.30 views
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Snakes for 2013, Year of the Snake.30 views
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Koshinkan is a 20-min. walk from JR Hakonegasaki Station. I rented a bicycle for 200 yen at the train station and rode to Koshinkan. Selling local products outside Koshinkan during Hina Matsuri.29 views
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Koshinkan's events.29 views
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Koshinkan's main building houses a restaurant, gallery spaces, and a small performance space on the 2nd floor for small concerts, etc. It has been beautifully renovated.29 views
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Kimono Mt. Fuji decoration on the right wall inside the kura.29 views
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Hina dolls inside the kura storehouse.29 views
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Rabbits29 views
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These dolls were made this past year.29 views
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On the second floor there was a quilt exhibition by Morgan Hill, California, Mizuho's sister city.29 views
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Quilts from Morgan Hill, California were forwarded to people in Tohoku.29 views
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This hina doll exhibit started eight years ago, so there were eight years worth of hina dolls and hanging decorations today. Every year, the number of decorations increases.28 views
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Goldfish28 views
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Little dolls of tea pickers. Mizuho produces Sayama tea.28 views
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Kimono decoration on the left wall inside the kura.27 views
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Hina decorations at Koshinkan. Koshinkan's main building has two exhibition rooms filled with hina dolls and hanging decorations.27 views
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Monkey27 views
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Horse27 views
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Quilt exhibition on the 2nd floor of the Koshinkan in Mizuho, Tokyo, by Morgan Hill, California, Mizuho's sister city.27 views
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A small storehouse, converted into an office, is attached to the main building.26 views
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Koshinkan has this separate kura storehouse housing a hina doll display.26 views
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About the storehouse.26 views
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There are ten ladies who volunteer to make these hanging decorations every year by hand at their own expense. They add many new dolls each year to this hina doll display.26 views
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The ladies, who love their hometown of Mizuho, decided to make these hina decorations a symbol of their unknown town.26 views
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Koshinkan official Website26 views
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Smaller decorations on the floor.25 views
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Miniature daruma25 views
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The first exhibition space has these hina decorations.25 views
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Kimono complements the hina dolls.24 views
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Snake created with kimono obi material. 2013 is the Year of the Snake.24 views
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Hina dolls at the entrance of the Koshinkan's main building. Free admission.24 views
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The other exhibition space on the 1st floor is bigger, with more dolls and hanging decorations.24 views
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Mizuho slogan.24 views
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Welcome to Mizuho at Hakonegasaki Station. Display of local products.24 views
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Sayama tea fields can be seen from the train near Hakonegasaki Station.24 views
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View from Hakonegasaki Station.24 views
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Cicada23 views
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Snakes23 views
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Top-tier Hina dolls at Koshinkan, Mizuho, Tokyo.23 views
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Benzaiten Shrine at Sayama Ike Park in Hanno, Saitama.23 views
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About Sayama Ike Park.23 views
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Map of Mizuho.23 views
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JR Hakonegasaki Station in Mizuho, Tokyo.23 views
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Snake created with kimono obi material. 2013 is the Year of the Snake.22 views
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Well at Koshinkan22 views
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About the well at Koshinkan.22 views
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Little flowers22 views
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The park's best-looking building is the restroom.22 views
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A blind daruma and a maneki neko beckoning cat with a daruma at Hakonegasaki Station in Mizuho, Tokyo.22 views
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In front of Hakonegasaki Station on the JR Hachiko Line.22 views
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Koshinkan also has a small garden.21 views
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Bird house21 views
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If you see a stray turtle, call.21 views
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Restroom rear view.21 views
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Sayama tea21 views
   
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