Every year in March, residents and visitors of the Aichi Prefecture in Japan flock to Komaki, north of Nagoya, to celebrate the phallus, all as part of the Penis Festival – also known as Honen-sai.
Well, to wish fertility to loved ones, obviously, by throwing a massive festival packed with all manner of penis-like objects.
Think dick statues, cream-filled cakes shaped like members, throbbing monsters paraded through the streets. Visitors can pray to the many structures in hopes of having a child, meeting someone lovely, or having a bountiful harvest.
It’s all about fertility, with the penis as a symbol of that. The festival begins each year on 15 March at Tagata shrine, where priests have salted the road to purify the path for those carrying large penises.
Then, the largest wooden penis, crafted each year from Japanese cypress, is carried by a group of men. This can be incredibly hefty, weighing upwards of 400kg and with a circumference of more than 100cm, and is the one to which most tributes and prayers are paid.
Lucky guests are able to give the wooden penis a kiss on the tip. Once that bit’s done, it’s time for the parade, featuring more penis tributes, followed by a street party with snacks, sake, and souvenirs.
Yes, the food is indeed all penis shaped, as are all the souvenirs.
Do enjoy tucking into a chocolate dipped banana, uncircumcised hot dogs, and artfully designed pancakes. Do we wish we could be there? Absolutely, yes. But sadly, plane tickets to Japan are pricey.
So instead let us look at the glorious photos of this year’s proceedings, carve some food into a phallic shape, and pretend we’re part of the fun.