An overview of the main events
Only ten hours after the Nagaregaki the Asayama begins very early at 5 o’clock in the morning. Throughout Hakata the shouts “Oisa” can be heard and the Asayama begins.
During the Asayama from 5 to 6 o’clock in the morning each district carries their Kakiyama along a set path through their own district to symbolically cleanse it.
The Asayama, also called Shūgiyama (祝儀山: festivity-yama), is in itself a special occasion. On this day elderly people bring offering sake and snacks, which they share with the children and adults participating. This carrying event has one of the best moods and anticipations. In the morning twilight the Kakiyama are raised and the men seem ready to even take on the gods. The customs for each district are different and even the exact starting times differ.
Though the Oiyama also begins at dawn, it has more of an audience. During the Asayama most of Hakata is in bed, all they hear is the “Oisa” shouted by the men as they carry the Kakiyama through the districts, making them feel like in a weird dream.
The Asayama is generally held from 5 until 7 o’clock though it can sometimes go on until 8 o’clock. Quite a few people tend to chase the processions around a bit before going to work.
The men carrying the Kakiyama aren’t out of it when the Asayama is over though. 12 hours later they have to come again for the Tanagaregaki.