did you hear about the Setsubun ceremony ? This traditional bean throwing festival held on 2th and 3th of February, one day before the beginning of spring in Japan. For many centuries japanese people have been performing rituals in order to purify and chase away the evil spirits for the new spring.
Nowadays the most commonly performed ritual is the throwing of roasted beans in one's house, temples and shrines across the city. You have to shout " Fuku wa uchi ! oni wa soto ! " ( happiness in, devil out ! ) Also japanese people believe that eating theses beans brings assurance of good fortune in the coming year.
Other celebration of Setsubun is eating nori maki, a special sushi roll. When you are eating the nori maki, you may face a "lucky direction" (in geomantic form) and try to eat the entire sushi roll without saying a word. Those who are able to accomplish this feat (the roll is about 20 cm long) are promised luck with their business, longevity, and freedom from illness.
It's also an opportunity for Japanese people to get dress up with kimono and visit some shrines in order to enjoy this festival.