A lion dance for the water god with a tradition handed down for a thousand yearsOne of the unique features of the lion dance in Nagai is that the head is black. It even has a special name, “jagashira,” or snake head. People representing the crests of waves line up under a long cape attached to the lion head and form a line called the “mukade shishi,” or caterpillar lion. The energetic performance leaves a powerful impression. The festival, known as the Nagai Kuro Jishi Matsuri, is put on collaboratively each year by a dozen-plus shrines at the end of May.