Recreated traditional farm life in the village of folklore, Tono
Tono Furusato Village is an outdoor museum which has recreated the agricultural environment of the good old days of Tono with actual old houses being moved in. The seven old residences that were moved into the area and restored which include the L-shaped bent houses that are specific to the Tono region known as Nambu magariya are authentic residences that were built from the Edo to Meiji Eras. There are sunken hearths inside the homes, and you can get a glimpse into the lifestyle that was specific to Tono through the distinct houses that had stables attached to the main buildings. Outside, water wheels turn and fields spread out so that time flows slowly.
Sample the life of Tono through its Handicraft Program
Various local handicrafts are taught such as traditional folkcraft and cuisine carefully maintained by the local elders. There are courses such as handicrafts using straw and bamboo, vegetable dyeing, pottery trial classes and local cuisine including soba and mochi rice cakes, so that learning about the farm lifestyle within the lush environment of Tono is truly exceptional. At the Visitor Center, there is a reception desk for the Handicraft Program as well as a library, and you can even sample some of the local cuisine at the adjacent restaurant.
Traditional events where you can get that Tono feeling
At Tono Furusato Village, there are many traditional events that are held throughout the year. Beginning with the Harukaze Festival to herald the arrival of spring, there is the Haru Monogatari which is held during the Golden Week holidays of May, and the local performing art of the Lion Dance. There are also many events related to a farming village such as the Umakko Tsunagi in June which tries to repel the insects from the crops, and the Amakaze Festival in which prayers for safety are made during typhoon season. The Dobekko Festival in November is the celebration for sampling the locally-made liquor known as doburoku, and performances of music and dance can be observed at the old houses along with sampling of the local cuisine.