Spirit Festival (御霊祭) is a local celebration currently held each year on May 18 in Demachi, and is said to be the oldest known festival in Kyoto. A large procession that includes very ornate carts and portable shrines (神輿 mikoshi) makes its way around the entire district before arriving at Kamigoryō Jinja (上御霊神社) for an elaborate ceremony. One of the most high energy segments of the day long event is when the parade, including all of the carts and mikoshi, charges right through Demachi Masugata Shōtengai (出町桝形商店街), with crowds of onlookers filling every available space in the arcade and up the side streets. In Tamako Market Episode 4, this event is recreated in great detail, even down to quite faithful renderings of the costumes and mikoshi. This post is a round up of the best images and notes by those in attendance for the 2014 festival.

@yakimeshi_1973 uploaded a photo gallery covering the procession, several of which appear below.

Preparing the mikoshi for departure

The procession begins

Waka Saba-chan has been drawn up a bit higher than usual, probably to avoid a collision with the mikoshi as they pass through.

The procession enters the covered pedestrian arcade


@tesra1141 utilized the high art of monopod and remote trigger skills to capture an overhead video of the large, gold painted mikoshi passing through the arcade: