Right in the midst of the busy streets of Hakata, next to Canal City, lies this shrine famous for Yamakasa, its annual July 15 festival. The shrine is the center of the festival where floats race through the streets and is the only place having one of the floats on permanent display. I visited Kushida Shrine two days before Yamakasa to watch the participants practice. The pre-festival mood, visible each July 1-14, is extremely lively and it seemed as if this was the time of the year when the old shrine shines most brightly with high-spirited people.
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