Roses and Fireworks

Because I was in the last three weeks of my pregnancy, in the hospital, and at home with a newborn during the time my parents were out, we didn't really get around to much traveling as a group. However, the annual Fukuyama Rose Festival and Bentenjima fireworks display both took place while they were visiting and so they did experience a bit of the fun and energy of a Japanese summer festival. I do love a good parade and festival and was glad that Rosie decided to stay put so that I could enjoy it too.

This year, the Rose Festival took place on the weekend of May 18th and 19th. The first day was unseasonably humid and hot, around 30˚C, and there was really only so much walking, watching street performers, and peeking in on craft stalls that we could handle before the boys and I decided to head back home.

the sign in front said "free hugs" and Theo took him up on that offer

This is my favourite street performer by far.  As far as I know, he shows up every year. 

As soon as she finished, someone decided to walk right down the center of her artwork...sigh! 

On the second day of the festival there is a four hour parade from Fukuyama Station to the Rose Park. We trekked out to the Rose Park to check out the blooms and watch the last two hours of the parade. It had rained during the night, so the roses looked especially beautiful with collections of rain drops in the folds of their petals. 

Here are some scenes from the parade: 

and a tour of the Rose Park:

Very Alice in Wonderland

"Rose Fukuyama" which was developed in 1987 in commemoration of the city

The Bentenjima fireworks festival took place the following weekend in the little port town of Tomonoura. The fireworks are launched from Benten Island, just off the coast of Tomonoura in the Seto Inland Sea. Food stalls line the main street of Tomonoura and people find a spot to sit along the boardwalk overlooking the water.

I love festival food. Yum! 

Waiting for the show to begin

A perfect way to start off the summer! 

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