This race is held at an old elementary school in Mitsue Village every autumn. Participants dash from one end of the hallway for the other, sweeping off the 100-meter-long floor with a wiping cloth to win the race. The competition is divided into 7 categories by length, by age, individual, pairs, relay, and so on. It also aims to break the Guinness World Record for floor-wiping. On the day of the event, there are vendors and markets selling delicious food and local produce.
Why are Japanese people so serious about wiping floors?
Floor-wiping, or Zokin-gake in Japanese, is a conventional method of house cleaning in Japan. In Japan, kids have to clean their classrooms and hallways on their own at school. That is considered part of education in Japan. It's mandatory, and every Japanese adult remembers that they wiped floors with wet cloth mostly reluctantly, but sometimes having fun racing friends. Wiping school hallways is an everyday activity for children, evokes nostalgia for adults.
Application required to participate in the race. Please contact us if you want to be a wiper.
Dates: October 9th, 2023
Venue: Mitsue Culture Community Hall (Mitsue Taiken Koryukan)
Link: Zokin Dash in Mitsue PR video