Traditional riparian iris flower wedding procession reenacted

Visitors to a riverside garden in Ibaraki Prefecture enjoyed a traditional wedding ceremony procession on a boat amid irises in full bloom.

Itako City, northeast of Tokyo, is surrounded by lakes and rivers where boats plying waterways was once a daily form of transportation.

Until the 1960s, it was customary for brides in white wedding kimonos to be seen on row boats heading to meet their bridegrooms.

The revived tradition has become a highlight of the annual Suigo Itako Iris Festival.

Recently married couples, or those planning to marry sent in applications to the city for a chance to take part in the event.
On Saturday, a boat carrying a bride set out as visitors watching from the riverside applauded.

The bride and groom were united at a dock and then proceeded to walk through the iris garden.

One of the visitors said the ceremony was so beautiful that he was almost moved to tears.

Bride Miyamoto Michiko said it was a very happy day for her, and that she could see from the boat each one of the people along the river applauding her.

Bridegroom Miyamoto Kensuke said that he was elated by all of the congratulations.

The ceremony can be seen on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays through June 16.