Up to a maximum of five weddings can be reserved at the site of the Iris Matsuri (festival) in Itako, Ibaraki prefecture. One man leads the procession providing a very slow tempo. He will also be handling the paddle propelling the Venice canal style boat. He is followed by two men carrying the dowry (currently merely an empty box). Next comes the father of the bride followed by the bride's mother carrying an umbrella for herself and the bride. The group is deposited in one of the boats and then slowly make their way down the canal to wherever the groom and his party are waiting for the actual wedding. The first procession depicted is in some respects quite accurate in that the bride in fact is not native to the area and is being transported into the area to join the groom who in fact does live in the area.
This weekend is usually the best weekend for weddings and today the maximum allowance of five weddings was booked in anticipation of the last dry weekend before the rainy season. Well it rained and the bridal parties were plastic wrapped detracting somewhat from the photogenic properties of the event.
Click on Wedding Processions to see photographs on Picasa.