The city of Tendo is in the prefecture of Yamagata, in the Tohoku area of Japan. At 400 kilometers from Tokyo, this small city is well known for his craftsmanship of shogi pieces.
For go to Tendo I chose the cheapest way that was the night bus. It leaves 23:15 from Asakusa station and arrives at 5:20 to Tendo. The seat of the night bus is wider than the airplane seat and quite comfortable so is a good option for travel around Japan without losing time and money.
The ceremony started at 10 o’clock so I had almost 5 free hours. I went to eat breakfast at a 24h restaurant near my hotel and then I walked to the city train station. Tendo is at the north of Japan and is colder than the Tokyo area. Because of this, the blooming season is 2-3 weeks later than Tokyo. That weekend was full bloomed so it was a beautiful view.
Bridge of silver general.
The city of Tendo if full of references to Shogi. Many bridges have names of shogi pieces and the streets are full of shogi tsume problems.
King piece over a post box.
A clock at the train station.
Tsume problem. Can you solve it?
There is a 20-30 minute walk from the train station to Maitsuru so for this event, some shuttle buses are prepared. At 10 o’clock started the ceremony at the top of the mountain Maitsuru.
The priest sang some orations and bless the giant piece of shogi located at the top of the hill. With this ceremony, the festival started.
After the priest ceremony, the were introduced the assistants to the shogi matsuri. Besides the shogi players, there was the take over ceremony of the shogi queens. These 2 girls will represent the city of Tendo in many events and will perform as the ambassadress of the city.
The first performance was made by the pre-schoolers of the kindergarten of Tendo. They danced the song of nya shogi from the anime March comes in like a lion.
After this the music band of the school made his perform.
Before the game between Muroya Yuki and Nakamura Momoko the female player Shimai Saori played against the best shogi player in the primary school of the prefecture of Yamagata. The game was commented by the players Abe Kenjiro and Madoka Kitao.
More posts about the Tendo festival: