National

Boats in Tokyo harbor light up to create hope amid pandemic

Kyodo

About 20 vessels gathered in the Port of Tokyo on Thursday to turn their lights on all at once in a bid to create hope and wish for an end to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The water taxis, cruisers and traditional yakatabune boats that took part in the event rely heavily on tourism and have been hit hard since the spread of the virus.

The project, titled “Light up together! Kindle a light of hope,” was engineered by a group including shipping operators, event organizers and eateries.

The vessels lit up at around 7:30 p.m. against a backdrop of city lights.

“Operations among sightseeing boats dropped to zero at one point,” an organizer said. “Customers have gradually been returning, but we’d like to light up the ocean with many vessels soon.”

In a related development, a couple who were unable to hold a wedding due to the pandemic held a ceremony on a yakatabune boat.

Water taxis also took part in a similar event in Nakanoshima in the heart of the city of Osaka.

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