Hobara, Fukushima

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Hobara
保原町
Former municipality
Country Japan
Region Tōhoku
Prefecture Fukushima Prefecture
Merged January 1, 2006
(now part of Date)
Area
 • Total 41.99 km2 (16.21 sq mi)
Population (January 1, 2006)
 • Total 24,491
 • Density 583.25/km2 (1,510.6/sq mi)
Time zone Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)

Hobara (保原町?, Hobara-machi) was a town located in Date District, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. It was a part of the Kenpoku Region.

At that time, studies reported the town had an estimated population of 24,491 people and a density of 583.25 persons per km². The total area was 41.99 km².[1]

On January 1, 2006, Hobara, along with the towns of Date, Ryōzen, Tsukidate and Yanagawa (all from Date District), was merged to create Date City.

Local Events[edit]

Tsutsukobiki[edit]

Tsutsukobiki is a yearly festival that happens in Hobara in March. Members of the community and surrounding towns join together to carry, shake, and smash a straw bushel containing mochi inside. The event proceeds with a three team tug-of-war (split by where the participants live). Eventually, participants carry the straw to a nearby shrine, at which the bushel is cut open with a ceremonial sword.

Momo Marathon[edit]

There is a yearly "Momo Marathon" (Peach Marathon) which passes through Hobara each summer.

Folk Tales and Local Legends[edit]

Shinkeibo[edit]

Shinkeibo (真敬坊) was a Japanese monk who travelled through Hobara during a plague and was able to treat the villagers, saving them from their sickness. Shinkeibo was asked by the villagers to stay in the town permanently, but stories vary as to whether he resumed wandering or spent the rest of his life in Hobara. Shinkeibo is still considered a hero for his help.

Bomaka[edit]

Bomaka (ぼまか) is the name of a playful spirit that caused trouble to residents of Hobara for approximately one year. Little is known about him beyond his great power and mischievous nature.

Kamekyo[edit]

Kamekyo is the name of a spirit that resides in a local shrine, Itsukushima Shrine (厳島神社) in Hobara. Local legends include tales in which Kamekyo, a childlike spirit, plays with village children or helps villagers in times of famine or poverty.

Local Foods[edit]

Mame Kojiru[edit]

Mame Kojiru (豆っこ汁) is a kind of bean used in making dango,[2] a dumpling that is eaten both on its own and as an additive (in miso soup broth, for instance). Mame Kojiru is considered to be a creation native to Hobara.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Japanese Wikipedia Article: 保原町 (Hobara-machi) (site), Wikipedia.org. Retrieved on March 19, 2007.
  2. ^ Product Plaza Fukushima (site), Retrieved on March 19, 2007.

External links[edit]