The shrine is widely known to the locals by the nickname of “O-kushida-san” because the god of the shrine is the tutelary deity of the residents of Hakata. According to oral tradition, it was first constructed in 757, and charming seasonal festivals that are famous throughout Japan are held at the shrine year. These include the “Hakata Dontaku Festival (with Matsubayashi musical accompaniment)” and “Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival.”
Hakata Gion Yamakasa (博多祇園山笠?) is a Japanese festival celebrated from 1-15 July in Hakata, Fukuoka. Famous for its one ton float-racing, it has a seven hundred and fifty year history, attracts up to a million spectators, and in 1979 was designated an Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property. The sound of the Kaki Yamakasa has been selected by the Ministry of the Environment as one of the 100 Soundscapes of Japan.