The parade of army led by Ujitsuna Hojo the son of Soun Hojo. It is actually Ujitsuna who changed their family name from Ise to Hojo. Ujitsuna not only solidified the territory his father captured but expanded its territory to eastern part of Suruga(Shizuoka) to Southwestern to middle part of Kanto Area.
The army led by Soun Hojo the founder of Latter Hojo Family who ruled the Kanto Region of Japan during late 15th to late 16th century. Hojo family was based in Odawara for about 100 years until they surrendered to Hideyoshi Toyotomi in 1590.
Hojo Godai means five generation from Soun Hojo to Ujinao Hojo. Hojo clan in warring-states period Japan during late 15th to late 16th century is nothing to do with Hojo clan who ruled Kamakura government after Minamoto clan died down during 13 to 14 th century. To distinguish, the family lineage of Soun is referred to as Latter Hojo clan.
Local boy and girl scouts were clad as Fuma Ninja, a Ninja Group led by the chief who calls himself Kotarou Fuma. Katarou Fuma is the legendary ninja who served under Hojo clan during mid 16th to late 16th century. Fumas were said to have been active during 17th century.
Warriors performing Sankon-no-Gi ritual. About 500 years ago this ritual was often performed before the campaign praying for the victory of the war. Sankon means three-time sake sipping. Each time the Clan leader sips a mouthful of sake he also eats auspicious food such as sliced dried abalone(Uchiawabi) denoting beating the enemy, dried chestnut(kachiguri) for winning, and seeweed(kombu) for Yorokobu(rejoicing the victory). Today this ritual can be seen in wedding ceremony or ceremony for launching election campaign.
After the ceremony the march starts with the retelling of the exploits of Soun Hojo, the founder of Latter-Hojo clan who launch campaign against Horikoshi Kubo based in Nirayama in Izu Peninsula. A courier dispatched by post-horse informs Soun Hojo(Sozui Ise at that time) about the enemy moves.
Odawara Hojo Godai Matsuri is a festival held around May 3 every year. It is well-known by the parade of warriors, ladies, ninjas and princesses clad just the same way members of Samurai family about 500 years ago might have been wearing. Beating the drum is often used for the ceremony to start the campaign.