Also called Hinamatsuri, or Doll Festival, households with girls showcase very elaborately costumed dolls for one day only. These are not your mundane Malibu Barbie or Groovy Girls, but Not-to-Play-With Dolls Specifically for Display and Usually Protected by a Glass Case. but The tradition continues that if one leaves the dolls out past Girls' day, it has serious repercussions on the a girl's marriage-ability. I believe that was made up by someone who was a little overzealous about cleaning.
While it has been replaced by the more generic "Children's Day" on May 5th in Japan, Girls' Day is still alive and well in Hawaii and with ex-pat Hawaii folks, at least judging by my Facebook and Twitter traffic. The traditional Boys Day is be celebrated on May 5th.
Our household's modern version keeps dolls out for about a week. Lately it has also signaled the final clean-up of decorations from Christmas/New Year's/Lunar New Year's and a few errant Easter eggs. And while girls typically receive little cookies or mochi, our girl has opted for Tapioca Express bubble tea drinks.
Celebrate the girls and women in your lives.
Happy Girls Day to all!