New King and Queen named at Shuri Castle Festival
The selection of a new King and Queen to appear at the festivals in Shuri Castle was originally scheduled to be a part of the Mid-autumn Celebration, Chushu-no Utage at Shuri Castle Park over the weekend, but the festival was cancelled Sunday due to the anticipated bad weather.
Instead, the “Election of King and Queen” was held at Okinawa Miyako Hotel in Shuri on Sunday. 35-year-old Hiroshi Nakasone from Haebaru Town was elected the King, and 29-year-old Hiromi Gushiken from Urasoe City will be the Queen for the next year.
26 applicants vied for the position of the King and 34 hopefuls wanted to the Queen. The King’s first public appearance will be at the coronation ceremony in Shurijo Castle Park on Oct. 29th, while the public will have the first glimpse of the new Queen (together with King) at the Procession of Ryukyu Kingdom to be held on the Kokusai Street in Naha City on Oct. 30th. Both will attend festivals at Shuri Castle for a year.
After the selection, Nakasone said that he would like to spread knowledge of Okinawan history, to begin with the students at Tomari Elementary School where he works. Gushiken said that she felt happy because her dream of being the Queen had come true, and she would like to learn about Okinawan culture and teach it to as many people as possible.