Japanese sparklers festival held in Yokote
10,000 small sparklers were lit at a festival on Sunday night in Yokote, Akita Prefecture, in northern Japan.
The handheld fireworks, called "senko hanabi," resemble incense sticks and are loved in Japan for their ephemeral nature.
About 2,300 people, some of them in summer cotton kimono, gathered on the banks of the River Yokote in the evening.
As night set in, people lit their sparklers, one after the other. They watched the sparks burst and flame and then flicker out.
A tourism association in the city and other groups started the annual festival 6 years ago.
It began as an effort to draw a contrast against the large-scale, more commercial fireworks festival held in Omagari District, in the neighboring city of Daisen.
One elementary school girl said she and her friends enjoyed the event very much and liked watching to see whose sparklers lasted the longest.