national

Trash bags being handed out to fight litter problem during Tokyo Halloween street parties

12 Comments
By Casey Baseel, RocketNews24

After roughly two decades of being thought of as a dangerous celebration, Halloween has finally caught on in a big way here in Japan. Sadly, though, all of this hard-fought progress is in danger of going to waste, for no sooner has Japan achieved the status of a fun event than it’s starting to earn a stigma as a dirty one.

Tokyo’s Shibuya and Roppongi neighborhoods, two of the biggest nightlife centers in the city, are the sites of its liveliest Halloween gatherings. On the Friday and Saturday preceding or coinciding with October 31, revelers pack the streets, showing off their costumes, snapping pictures, and hopping from one party venue to another. But while the ghosts, goblins, witches, and warlocks are gone come the morning, their unsightly piles of trash are left behind on the sidewalks.

To help combat this problem, Internet portal &Tokyo and volunteer organization Green Bird will be handing out trash bags in Shibuya and Roppongi on Friday, October 28, and Saturday, October 29. Hopefully this will cut down on litter by encouraging people to cart their trash to a designated collection point or, if they can’t find one, to take their garbage home with them instead of tossing it on the sidewalk. And to add at least a little bit of festive fun to being a courteous partier, the trash bags are styled like jack-‘o-lanterns, so as they fill up with trash they look increasingly like decorative pumpkins.

In Shibuya, bags will be handed out between noon and 11 p.m. near the Shibuya Station Moai statues, in front of the Mark City entertainment center, Tower Records, select Lawson convenience stores, and, on Saturday only, at the entrance to the 109 shopping tower. Bags can be obtained in Roppongi between noon and 10 p.m. at the Tokyo Midtown and Roppongi Crossing intersections, as well as a select Lawson branches.

Still, given the huge amount of trash left behind after Tokyo’s Halloween celebrations in 2014 and 2015, it’s unlikely that the plan will instantly and completely eliminate litter. Because of that, Green Bird is recruiting volunteers for clean-up teams to be out taking care of any messes on the mornings of October 29 and 30. Those interested can sign up here, but hopefully 2016’s Halloween crowds can remember to clean up after themselves so that this year’s volunteers have less work to do than last year’s.

Source: IT Media

Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- You party, we tidy — Volunteers, kids hit Shibuya streets to clean up after Halloween hijinks -- Tokyo shopping center celebrates Halloween with so, so many eyeball-shaped sweets 【Photos】 -- Divine prevention – Japan using Shinto symbols to combat litter and public peeing

© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.


12 Comments
Login to comment

"After roughly two decades of being thought of as a dangerous celebration, Halloween has finally caught on in a big way here in Japan."

Dangerous? Really? I hope the writer isn't expressing an accurate sentiment of how Halloween has been perceived.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The last thing party revelers want to do is carry around a trash bag. How about setting out lots of garbage cans? Decorate them like goblins or whatever and trash will find its way in.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Yes Halloween is a "dangerous" celebration when you consider the concept of Mischief Night, which is directly related to the "trick" part. The risk in letting little kids go door to door receiving consumables from total strangers has influenced many communities in the United States, where trick or treating is done with adult supervision, and rowdiness and vandalism on the street is managed by organized Halloween parties. For adults, private Halloween parties are the way to dress up and enjoy the night. Street parties are great in metropolitan centers provided they do not go out of control. People in Japan may recall the shooting incident of a Japanese high school kid in Louisiana on Halloween night a couple of decades ago adding to the dangerous image.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The 'dangerous' connotation in Japan is probably due to the Japanese boy who was shot dead in the "Freeze!" incident in the US. Can't think what else the article is referring to.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

"People in Japan may recall the shooting incident of a Japanese high school kid in Louisiana on Halloween night a couple of decades ago adding to the dangerous image."

"The 'dangerous' connotation in Japan is probably due to the Japanese boy who was shot dead in the "Freeze!" incident in the US."

This happened 24 years ago. Nobody is going to be shot in Japan in celebrating Halloween.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

So, this means they'll have all the garbage bags to pick up as well as the litter? The littler problem is inevitable because they remove all the garbage cans.

Halloween has NOT caught on in Japan. The tradition of trick or treat and costumes came from the US and was for children. Halloween in Japan is just an over-commercialised cos-play festival. Ask any Japanese person about the history of this pagan ritual and they have no idea what they are celebrating or why. It's just cos-play gone wild!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Halloween has NOT caught on in Japan.

Yes it has. There are Halloween decorations everywhere, and many people get together and have a good time on Halloween night.

The tradition of trick or treat and costumes came from the US and was for children.

So it's ok if the US comes up with a way of celebrating Halloween that wasn't part of the original tradition, but if Japan decides to celebrate Halloween and doesn't follow the US version of it, it's not 'authentic'. Yeah, right. Talk about an attitude of cultural superiority.

Ask any Japanese person about the history of this pagan ritual and they have no idea what they are celebrating or why.

And you think the average American does? Give me a break.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Trashy article , full of garbage, only pumpkin heads would be interested in reading it ,,,,,lol

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I don't think this is going to work. The reason people don't carry their trash home on halloween night is because: A-no one wants to crowd their hands with am empty drink when they could be holding a full drink B-their costumes don't suit lugging around a bag to put their trash and stuff in. It's for that same reason people are willing to be cold and underdressed for one night/year C-they are having fun, and they maybe drunk. Trash is not at the top of their minds!

Don't get me wrong, we don't mind bringing it to the nearby trash bins, but the attention span is short, so if it's not nearby, then maybe the expectations are too high!

We put toilets at festivals and events because we don't want people doing their business on the streets, the same applies here: put some more trash bins for special events!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They should hand out sturdy, fashionable bags with belt clips and disposable liners. Not the big 30-gallon ones.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Anywhere in the world where a large event takesplace, additional temporary garbage boxes are installed. And it is part of the services you have paid for through local taxes that streets are cleaned up. Having fun needs open-minded people, not ones starting to make fuss about the light consequences like sweets's packages on the floor.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Please bring back the trashcans to the streets and train & subway stations.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites