On February 15th, 2019, the traditional Sagicho fire festival was held at Kurotatsu Shrine located in Funabashi, Fukui City, Fukui Prefecture. At 6 a.m. while it was still dark, the representative of shrine parishioners said, "Let's get started!" and crawled into the horizontal cave made at the bottom of the rice straw mound and set the fire.
Rice straws of 1.2 hectares were used as the rice straw mound. The pile of rice straws was collected last autumn and had been stored in a shed. I was afraid that it would cause a fire because it was so close to the building, but great care was taken such as watering the straws in advance so that they wouldn't burn quickly.
The festival starts with "Collecting fans" on the night of February 10th. Children visit homes that had celebrations such as a wedding or building a new house to collect fans and money. This year, the 12 homes they visited were only they built a new house. Children called out, "Give us a fan or destroy your house. Give us a fan. Give us a fan."
The next day, on February 11th, the framework raising was held. The town people gathered and worked from early in the morning. No matter how bad the weather is, Sagicho completes in a day.