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Yaya Matsuri Options
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2015 12:00:00 AM
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Yaya Matsuri

The Yaya Matsuri, held in Owase, Japan, during the first week in February, features mikoshi (portable shrines) carried through the streets by groups of young men who meet and deliberately crash into each other. The festival takes its name from their shouts—"Yaya! Yaya!"—as they run into one another. Several special events, including dances, are held during the five-day festival. On the last night, there is a ceremony at the Owase Shrine to determine who will participate in the festival the next year. More...
Milica Boghunovich
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2015 10:01:12 AM
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Yaya Matsuri!!! Pretty silly... the Japanese festival to celebrate destruction and destructive mind...
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2015 10:52:26 AM

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A festival I should'n like to participate....

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◆Name of Yaya 
The name of the festival was named after yell of "Yaya" when they bumped each other during the festival every night.
There is another theory about the yell. During the Civil War period, samurai worriors appealed themselves by saying "Yaya" as the first phrase.

◆About 3 delegates  
According to the old document written in 1735, there were 3 delegates such as No.1 (Shoji, Seko, Kitamura) , No.2 (Naka), and No.3 (Tadokoro Betto, Hayashi).
And 3 delegates reminds us of 3 territories that protected today's Owashi city from the feudal load Horiuchi of Shingu (today's Wakayama pref.) when he tried to invade Owashi.
The bumping style of Yaya Neri dates back to the time when people of Owashi fought with Horiuchi. In ancient time, people need to receive recognition of "Oyakatashu (elder members of the city) to conduct the 5 days festival. To do so, people sent the letters of appointment to "Oyakatashu" 7 times, however, today, there is no such custom. At that time, 7 members called Tsumaza (literally means wives) supported "Oyakatashu".
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2015 12:08:55 PM
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TB Turtle
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2015 1:28:18 PM

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I thought the Mosh Pit craze ended in the 90's.
Posted: Sunday, February 1, 2015 10:10:42 PM

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Here is another version of the history of the festival, from a Japanese/English blog:

History of やや祭り Yaya Matsuri - Originated from 1549 in which Owase Jinja was part of another jinja. At the same time, Owase was an warriors' concentration where many battles took place. So, one of the feudal lords or his wife decided that the samurai should show their fighting spirit without more sacrificial of lives and mould this Matsuri where his men should participate in a friendly pushing competition without their katanas. This also helped to strengthen the physical fitness of the guys.

A "Jinja" is a Shinto shrine and that part of the quote makes no sense to me. The province in which Owasa was located was combined with several others to form the Mei Prefecture. Possibly "Owase Jinja was part of another jinja" refers to this alteration.

In any event, the Samurai were rough bunch, even without their swords. Though the current pushing, shoving contest between 3 neighborhoods of young men plastered on saki sounds a bit brutal, I imagine it is tame by comparison to the original contest.

The actual historic origin may be some combination of this version and the one Monamagda found.
Posted: Monday, February 2, 2015 6:27:30 AM

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Sounds like a DIY dodgem cars festival. Whistle
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