Spring bummer: Sakura viewing parties banned in Tokyo parks

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Workers set up nets around cherry trees to prevent visitors from entering the area, in Ueno Park in Taito Ward, Tokyo, on Saturday.

The Tokyo metropolitan government has prohibited outdoor parties while viewing cherry blossoms in all parks run by the government and installed nets on Saturday in Ueno Park in Taito Ward, Tokyo, around trees to nip in the bud such revelry.

Saturday marked the start of the first weekend since the state of emergency in Tokyo and three neighboring prefectures was extended. As a result of the extension, the metropolitan government temporarily prohibited entry into areas with cherry trees in four parks, including Ueno Park, that are usually packed with revelers enjoying the colorful blossoms.

“If infection clusters break out among people attending sakura viewing parties, the state of emergency may be prolonged yet again,” said a 31-year-old company worker from Setagaya Ward, Tokyo, who visited the park. “Now is the time to exercise self-restraint.”