Photo/Illutration People on stage, including Kabuki actor Ennosuke Ichikawa, who will appear at a local theater in the coming weeks, toss beans to the crowd in Fukuoka’s Hakata Ward on Feb. 3. (Jun Kaneko)

FUKUOKA--A packed crowd of revelers reached to catch bags of beans tossed by Kabuki actors in the seasonal setsubun ceremony held on Feb. 3 at Kushidajinja shrine in Hakata Ward here.

“I love Hakata,” said Ennosuke Ichikawa, a popular Kabuki actor. “I wish you all good luck.”

Ichikawa and other actors were among those who tossed beans from a stage in the annual event held for the first time in three years without any restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2021, the organizers just handed out packs of beans to those who wanted them. The bean-throwing returned the following year, though on a smaller scale. 

The ceremony marked the first attendance of Kabuki actors in four years. Ichikawa and others will perform at the local Hakataza theater later this month.

Setsubun marks the final day of winter on the lunar calendar, which people celebrate with the bean-throwing ritual to bring good fortune and chase off bad spirits.