Fireworks Museum

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The town of Ichikawamisato has a longstanding association with fireworks. The spectacular Shinmei Hanabi Taikai, one of the greatest firework displays in Yamanashi, is held annually on the Fuefuki River. Further back in history, fireworks were a folk art emblematic of the town and its people. At the Fireworks Museum, the story of this deep connection is told through a fascinating collection of artifacts and archive materials.

In this region, fireworks evolved out of the noroshi beacons used on the battlefield in the time of the famous warlord Takeda Shingen (1521-1573). Local people learned to make their own fireworks for celebration and entertainment, with materials from the area’s thriving washi (traditional Japanese paper) industry being key to this.

The Shinmei Hanabi Taikai, in fact, has its roots in locals releasing masses of fireworks to commemorate the passing of Jinzaemon, the man who introduced washi-making to the region. Promotional posters lining the walls of the museum, together with festive costume pieces and other colorful objects, show how the event gradually developed into its present format, in which around 20,000 fireworks are sequenced to tell a story through light, color, and sound.

Other exhibits demonstrate the workings of the combustible hanabitama (“firework balls”) used in traditional fireworks, while scale models show how the largest hanabitama could weigh as much as an adult human. Modern firework technology is covered too, while a video corner gives an action replay of the most recent Shinmei Hanabi Taikai.


Venue Address

409-3606 531-1 Takata, Ichikawamisato-cho, Nishiyatsushiro-gun

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