On the evening of Saturday, September 6th was the the actual Japanese-festival portion of the annual Kokeshi Festival in Naruko, and it was awesome! I think the best part was the parade with the human-sized paper mache kokeshis -- they were like rock stars among the revelers. We had perfect weather, the mood was great, and overall the event was fantastic. There were even three mikoshi 神輿 (portable shrines) being carried through the streets. I'll let the photos tell the story, but this was easily one of the best festivals I've ever been to during my time in Japan.