Among numerous festivals in Kanuma, the biggest is the Imamiya Shrine Festival, also known as the Kanuma Autumn Festival.
The Kanuma Autumn Festival takes place the second Saturday and Sunday of every October.
Over 300,000 people crowd the streets.
The Mount Nantai god is consecrated at Imamiya Shrine.
Many people have gathered there to worship the Kanuma Juku Ujigami (gods) since the Edo Period (1603-1867).
Over 400 years ago, the people of Kanuma were hit hard by a severe drought. They prayed for relief at the shrine.
A heavy thunderstorm came, and they were able to raise their crops.
The feelings of gratitude to the gods were the origin of the festival.
The floats file into the shrine is held on the second Saturday of October.
The most impressive part of the festival is Kurikomi, the procession of floats into the shrine.
All of the floats go to Imamiya Shrine, and the bands play as an offering.
The worshippers then express their gratitude and reverence to the Imamiya gods for the safety of the previous year.
With lanterns lighting, the floats are taken back to their respective communities from the shrine. This is called Kuridashi.
An event for everyone is held on the second Sunday of October.
Free from the nervousness of the first day, festival participants are able to enjoy the festival.
They feel a lot of pride as the carved floats are introduced in the parade.
The festival is overflowing with spectators, marching bands, dancers, and more.
A Japanese music band competition is held on the second Saturday and Sunday of October.
It is one of the highlights of the festival.
Floats are carried around town, and when two or more meet at intersections, the musicians of each float compete with their own music and rhythm.