A few days ago was the huge Takayama Autumn Festival- one of the 3 most beautiful in Japan, they say! It's also one of my town's main attractions. It was entirely rained out on Saturday, but on Sunday it went on as planned. It was amazing, there was at least a half mile of vendors along the river, selling some pretty delicious Japanese carnival food.
The main attraction at the festival are a dozen "yatai", super intricate floats that are only displayed during the festival. They are cultural treasures of Japan and have some neat features. One has a puppet stage in it, and puts on a puppet show a few times during the day. The puppets are controlled from underneath the float with a series of mechanisms. The puppeteers can't see anything so it's really impressive! Because of the rain, there was no parade around town, but the floats were viewable along the town's main boulevard on Sunday.