A traditional ritual at a shrine in Fukushima Prefecture saw participants attempting to catch free-running horses with only their bare hands.
The event took place on Monday, the last day of a 3-day traditional summer festival, in the Odaka district of Minamisoma City.
Earlier this month, the government lifted an evacuation order on the district. It was issued after the 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
At the sound of conch shells, men dressed as samurai warriors on horseback began chasing 3 unsaddled horses on a slope leading to the shrine compound.
Spectators clapped and cheered as other men in white costumes caught the horses after they were driven into an area surrounded by a bamboo fence.
The men later offered one of the horses to the deity of the shrine.
A 69-year-old evacuee who lives in another district of the city with her family says she comes to see the ritual every year, and that its overwhelming power never fails to move her. She says she wants to move back to Odaka with her family someday.
Source and image: NHK