National

Tokyo's volunteer spirit aids Halloween cleanup

Kyodo

Hundreds of garbage bags decorated like jack-o’-lanterns piled up Tuesday morning on the streets around Shibuya Station in Tokyo as volunteers filled them with rubbish left by thousands of costumed partygoers who swarmed the area just hours earlier.

By 8 a.m., Shibuya Ward officials had collected some 640 garbage bags from the area, which has become one of Tokyo’s most popular destinations for Halloween street parties.

“It’s good to have fun, but I can never like Halloween unless it does away with this kind of nuisance,” said a 23-year-old woman as she wielded tongs in one hand to pick up garbage and an umbrella in the other to shield her from the rain. “They need to show some manners.”

Center Gai, a narrow street that connects with the area’s iconic scramble crossing, was littered with empty aluminum cans and remnants of costumes early Tuesday morning after the area was swamped with revelers Monday for the fourth straight night.

According to the Shibuya Ward Office, more than 1,700 volunteers joined the cleanup effort between Friday and Tuesday morning, and some 500 more volunteers were slated to join later Tuesday.

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government began distributing the pumpkin-themed garbage bags during last year’s Halloween season in an effort to keep the capital’s streets clean while maintaining the spirit of the occasion.

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