What is the Matsuri?

Japan is known for its colourful and exuberant festivals known as Matsuri. Originally the word matsuri was a generic name for all Japanese Shinto ceremonies to honour and thank the gods.

In Japanese, matsuru means “to honour” and “to celebrate the gods”. In modern Japan, matsuri means both “festival” and “celebration”.

Usually sponsored and hosted by local shrines, these festivals celebrate various important events throughout the year, hosting spectacular parades, delicious food stalls and exciting games. Many famous Japanese events, like the Sapporo Snow Festival and the Nango Summer Jazz Festival, are considered to be matsuri.

At Tokonatsu, we want to honour these celebrations with our own regional matsuri. In years past we’ve hosted all kinds of events, and this year will be no different. We’re uniquely placed to offer a glimpse into what a true matsuri looks like, giving you a chance to explore the culture in your backyard!

### Further Questions & Queries

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about the matsuri, please feel free to email The Matsuri Team and we will try to answer as many questions as possible.

Event Attractions

Daruma Otoshi

Daruma Otoshi is a traditional Japanese game played with a daruma doll made out of wood in five pieces, usually in bright colours such as blue, green, yellow, red. The game is played by using a small hammer to hit each of the coloured pieces, from bottom to the top, without letting the other pieces fall during the game.


Garapon is a Japanese Lottery Machine. 'Gara' refers to the sound the machine makes while you are turning the handle, and 'Pon' describes a lottery ball coming out. Come and try your luck and see what prizes you can win. We will have prizes ranging from house points to sweets, plush and much more.


Katanuki literally means die cutting. It’s a common activity seen at Japanese festivals. (Very similar to the sugar cutting game you might have seen in the Squid Games series). We have some difficult Katanuki for you to get your hands on. They are coloured candy rectangles which you will need to carve using a toothpick. Images are already slightly carved out, in the shapes of an animal, star, a cherry blossom, etc., it’s your job to carve them out completely without breaking them.


Kendama is the ultimate Japanese game to test your skills. It consists of a handle (ken), a pair of cups (sarado), and a ball (tama) that are all connected together by a string. There are many combinations for playing with the Kendama but the most traditional is played by tossing the ball into the air and attempting to catch it in the cups then on the stick point.

Kingyo Sukui

Using a scooper with a thin piece of paper as a net, you try to catch as many goldfish as you can before the thin paper breaks. House points are awarded for the amount of fishes scooped.

Kodakku o sagase!

Kodakku o sagase!? Where could Psyduck be hiding? Like your old school treasure hunt, let us know where you think Psyduck might be hiding in the world of Pokémon. Put your name on a sticker and attach it to the board. If you succeed in finding Psyduck, you'll be able to add them to your PokéDex.

Mask Stall

This year we are looking to bring an Omen mask stall to the event. Omen is a type of mask in Japan which can take so many different forms from animal's faces to the ugly men, and the long-nosed goblin. In modern Japan these Omen masks can also include anime characters, kitsune, cats, rabbits and much much more. We would like to give you the opportunity to come along and buy some masks. We will have a variety ranging from normal kitsune, omen and kabuki masks to some funky LED versions. These will look epic against bonfire and at night.


Small pieces of paper with a fortune written on them. These fortunes describe a blessing for a curse and just general life advice. You can keep your fortune or even tie it to the wish tree if you desire.


An authentic traditional Pachinko machine will be making its appearance at Toko this year. Come and have a go at a piece of Japanese history and culture.


Want to make some lasting memories with your friends at Toko, why not try out our Purikura machine. Come take some photos, be as silly or as serious as you like, decorate them and print them for epic memories. Small charges for prints will apply.


Senbonbiki offers the chance to win various items such as snacks, toys, or sometimes house points. Prizes are attached to one end of a string while the other end is collected into bundles. You choose one string to pull. The item that moves at the other end is yours to keep. Like a lottery, senbonbiki is based on luck.


All the fun of the festival with this traditional shooting game! Try your luck and put your shooing skills to the test. Knock down the cups to win.

Sumo Wrestling

Have you ever wished you could be a professional Sumo Wrester? Unfortunately, we can't help with this however we have the next best thing. Get dressed to impress in your Sumo wrestling suit before you go rolling around the ring... now let’s see who is number one.

Superball Sukui

Just like Kingyo Sukui suki but with balls. Using a scooper with a thin piece of paper as a net, you try to catch as many rubber balls as you can before the paper breaks. House points and prizes are awarded for the balls you scoop.


Wanage is the Japanese name for your good old festival favourite, the ring toss. Test out your throwing precision and capture yourself some lovely house points.

Wish Tree

You must have heard of a wishing well... well the wish tree is the Japanese alternative. Collect your fortune and make your wishes. Take them home or tie them to the tree. We sincerely wish you happiness and great fortune.

Yo-yo Tsuri

Yo-Yo Tsuri is a water balloon attached to a rubber string with a loop on the end, allowing it to be bounced like a yo-yo. The balloons/prizes and house points can be won by fishing them out of the water using a hook on a piece of paper.


五-Plunk (ka-plunk) is based on the game Ker-plunk. The tower is filled with balls numbered from 1-5 in Japanese, the aim is to drop as many balls into the basket after removing 3 bamboo poles. Highest score wins… **BRAGGING RIGHTS**

Photo Gallery