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Japan planning secret, surprise fireworks show to cheer up nation

TOKYO – On a night not too far in the future but still being kept secret, skies across Japan will light up with simultaneous fireworks displays from north to south in a plan by fireworks makers to cheer a nation weary of battling the coronavirus. Fireworks have a centuries-old tradition in Japan, where massive, colorful displays are an iconic symbol of summer and draw hordes of people, many wearing bright summer kimono. They began as a way of warding off bad luck and epidemics. This year, with many festivals, including one of the most famous, on Tokyo’s Sumida River, canceled over the virus, fireworks makers facing tough times because of lack of work started talks that led to the “Cheer Up! Fireworks Project.” “Everyone’s ...