/

NAGASAKI

Lantern festival to put spotlight on Nagasaki’s Chinese neighborhood

by Edan Corkill

Staff Writer

Recent diplomatic squabbles between Japan and China have dampened enthusiasm around many bilateral events, but it seems nothing can dull the glow of the Nagasaki Lantern Festival, which will be held as always during the Chinese New Year.

Commencing Feb. 10 and continuing for two weeks, the festival will feature its usual 15,000-plus paper lanterns, which will illuminate the streets, parks and temples of Nagasaki’s Shinchi Chinese district.

The highlight of the event will be the grand parade — known as the maso-gyoretsu, which will feature dozens of giant lanterns depicting all manner of historical and mythical characters.

One of the highlights will be lanterns depicting the 12 signs of the zodiac in Chinese astrology, with the snake, whose year the event marks the start of, sure to feature prominently.

The Nagasaki Lantern Festival takes place Feb. 10-24 in Nagasaki. For more information, call 095-829-1314 or visit www.nagasaki-lantern.com.