EVENTNumber of Hits 363 Times
The Iizuka Yamakasa Festival is said to have started in the Kyoho period (1716-1736). There are 4 teams (Nagare) that take place in the festival. Each team represents one of the four districts in Iizuka. Each Nagare (team) meets and makes preparations on their Yamakasa (float). At the end of June, each Nagare establishes a headquarters and then decides on a color for their area and then dyes their Yamakasa. Then, on the early morning of July 1st the ritual called ”Oshioitori” takes place. This is a ritual where each team practices moving the Yamakasa. On July 11th and 13th, each Nagare practices running with their yamakasa in their district. This is called the ”Nagaregaki” On the 15th, the ”Oiiyama” occurs. The Oiiyama is the race itself. Before the race occurs, at a departure ceremony, which is in front of the plaza Cosmos Common Mae, each team reads aloud their determination to win the race. After each team is finished, the race is started! Each Nagare must keep their speed up in order to make it around the hairpin curve which is directly after the start! Nishimachidori is the home stretch of the race! It is here that each Nagare must run up a slight slope before they cross the finish line! Spectators here will not be disappointed as there are many sights to see! There is also a Children’s Yamakasa Festival that takes place after the main race. A child sized yamakasa is prepared with children from each district participating in the race. The Children’s Yamakasa starts at Yoshihara-machi and then moves through many different areas. These include Hon-machi and Higashi-machi before reaching the finish line called Yokamondori.