• Kyodo


As the Rio de Janeiro Olympics approach, a theme park focusing on birds and flowers in Matsue, Shimane Prefecture, is letting penguins strut their stuff in special outfits to cheer on Japanese athletes at the Rio Games.

Five penguins at Matsue Vogel Park wear white outfits with red, yellow and green circles — for Japan and Brazil — bearing messages such as “Go Japan!” and “Get gold medals!”

The birds will stroll the park at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. everyday until Aug. 21, when the games close.

“Penguins, too, are cheering. I hope the Japanese athletes will win as many gold medals as possible,” said park employee Shiho Kawanaka.

Visitors were seen taking photos of the penguins Monday when the strolls began.

The park, which sits on a green hilly area of Matsue, includes two bird houses and a large flower exhibition. It is open everyday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

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