The streets of Fukuoka in western Japan came alive as the ancient Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival came to a peak today.
The annual event has been underway since the year 1241.
People say the festival began when a priest spread holy water from a float to clear out a plague.
But participants were in a fever today with the grand finale.
Seven teams carrying elaborate floats raced through a five-kilometer route.
Each float weighs nearly a ton.
The Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival marks the start of summer in Fukuoka.
Up to a million spectators turn out each year.
come alive 活気を帯びる
holy water 聖水
clear out 取り除く
up to... ...まで ...に及んで
turn out 盛装する(？)
each year 各年