Four carp-shaped flags snapped in the breeze at Sparwood City Hall on Tuesday, May 5 as part of an annual flag raising ceremony to honour a national holiday in their sister city of Kamisunagawa, Japan.
Children’s Day — known in Kamisunagawa as “Kodomo no Hi” — is celebrated on May 5, the fifth day of the fifth month, to respect children’s personalities and to celebrate their happiness.
Sparwood council members greeted Kindergarten and Grade 1 students from Frank J. Mitchell Elementary School as they gathered beneath the flags.
Coun. Brad Bowen delivered a welcome speech to the children.
“On this day, families raise carp-shaped flags because legend has it that a carp that swims upstream becomes a dragon,” said Bowen to the children in attendance.
Following the ceremony, the children were welcomed inside City Hall to enjoy juice and cookies, while listening to a traditional story from Japan about Children’s Day.