For all of Hilo’s keiki: 15 koinobori fly at Mitsumori’s home in celebration of Children’s Day

  • Kelsey Walling/Tribune-Herald Fifteen koinobori are on display in front of Joyce Mitsumori’s home in Hilo on Tuesday, May 4, 2021. Mitsumori wanted to brighten spirits in her neighborhood to celebrate Children’s Day.

  • Kelsey Walling/Tribune-Herald Fifteen koinobori fly in the wind while displayed outside Joyce Mitsumori’s home in Hilo on Tuesday, May 4, 2021. Mitsumori wanted to honor all the children of Hilo by hanging the fish.

  • Kelsey Walling/Tribune-Herald Michele Mitsumori holds a koinobori in front of her mother’s home in Hilo on Tuesday, May 4, 2021. Joyce Mitsumori displayed 15 koinobori outside her home in honor Children’s Day.

To celebrate Children’s Day, traditionally known as Boys’ Day, Joyce Mitsumori decorated her home with 15 koinobori.

Children’s Day in Japan is observed each year on May 5 and is a holiday celebrating children’s personalities and happiness.


Traditionally, families raise koinobori, which are carp-shaped windsocks that look like they’re swimming when they blow in the wind. The carp is representative of the Chinese legend that a carp that swims upstream becomes a dragon and flies to heaven.

Although Mitsumori’s three children have grown, she wanted to put up the koinobori to celebrate all of Hilo’s children.


“I put these up on this important, special day to wish strength and perseverance to all children,” Mitsumori said. “It also brightens up people’s spirits when they walk down the road.”

After a year of a global pandemic, Mitsumori wanted to wish positivity and good luck to the children in the community and celebrate a holiday so important to her culture.

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