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News in Pictures / Summer Festivals Resume Across Japan

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Fireworks light up the night sky during the Sumida River Fireworks Festival in Tokyo on Saturday.

From local Bon Odori summer dance festivals to famous firework displays, midsummer events are being held across the nation, in many cases for the first time in four years.

The Yomiuri Shimbun
People watch fireworks near Arakawa River in Adachi Ward, Tokyo, on July 22.
The Yomiuri Shimbun
Participants dance during a local Bon Odori festival in Nerima Ward, Tokyo, on Saturday.
AP
People gather for a Bon Odori summer dance festival on Friday in Tokyo.

About 20,000 fireworks lit up the Tokyo sky on Saturday, dazzling the more than 1 million spectators who gathered for the Sumida River Fireworks Festival.

Many events featuring more than 10,000 fireworks are slated to take place in August, in locations such as Omagari, Akita Prefecture; Nagaoka, Niigata Prefecture; and Lake Biwa in Shiga Prefecture. Some firework displays, however, are being canceled because of soaring gunpowder prices caused mainly by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Participants gather for the Tobata Gion Oyamagasa Festival in Tobata Ward, Kitakyushu, on July 22.
The Yomiuri Shimbun
A large hand-held firework goes off at a festival at a shrine in Toyohashi, Aichi Prefecture, on July 21.
The Yomiuri Shimbun
Floats parade down a street during the Gion Festival in Kyoto on July 24.
The Yomiuri Shimbun
Maiko participate in the Gion Festival in Kyoto on July 24.
The Yomiuri Shimbun
People listen to a band at Oga Namahage Rock Festival in Oga, Akita Prefecture, on Saturday.

Experts are also alarmed over the resumed spread of coronavirus infections. “It’s important to ventilate spaces on a regular basis and wear masks as needed,” said Haruo Ozaki, head of the Tokyo Medical Association.