The first specifc holiday to be discussed as part of Japan Golden Week has gone through quite a bit of transition and some Golden Week grouping controversy. With so much holiday drama, where to start?
Until 1988, this holiday was a celebration of Emeror Hirohito’s birthday. Upon his passing, it was desired to keep this day as a holiday, so from 1989 to 2006 it was changed to Greenery Day (more on that in an later post). Then in 2007, the decision was made to again change the name and intent of the holiday. Showa Day, as it has been know for the past 8 years, is meant to encourage public reflection on the turbulent 63 years of Emeror Hirohito’s reign (also known as the Showa Era, which translates to “enlightened peace”) and the recovery that followed.
Now, for the grouping debate. This holiday falls on April 29; which was Emeror Hirohito’s actual birthday. With the date being ‘fixed’ it does not technically occur in the same traditional “week” as the other three holidays; however, it often falls within a week of the other three. So, depending on the interpretation of the term Golden Week, some consider Showa Day as being included and some don’t…oh the controversy.