MORIYAMA, Shiga -- A giant Christmas tree at an elementary school here in western Japan decorated with 51,626 message cards was recognized by Guinness World Records on Dec. 8 for having the highest number of notes attached to it.
The round cards, about 9.5 centimeters in diameter, were attached by string to the top of about a 30-meter-high dawn redwood on the grounds of the municipal Nakasu Elementary School. The tree was illuminated on that day and many people flocked to see the the cards made with reflective materials flash.
The project was carried out to commemorate the 50th anniversary since the town of Moriyama was upgraded to a city. Children from local kindergartens, child care centers, elementary, junior high and high schools had written messages about their aspirations for the city and their dreams on the cards since September.
Ayumi Arakawa, 7, a first-grade student at the municipal Ozu Elementary School, who wrote her dream to own a donut shop on a card, searched for it on the tree. Her father Takayuki, 36, said, "The 50,000 flashing cards are spectacular. We moved to this city half a year ago, so I hope it will be a good place to live where children can grow up in a healthy manner."
The message cards will be displayed until Dec. 26 and then preserved in a time capsule.
(Japanese original by Kenichi Isono, Kusatsu Resident Bureau)