Event Planned to Celebrate Giant Panda Twins’ 1st Birthday at Tokyo’s Ueno Zoo

The female giant panda, Xiang Xiang, who turns 5 on June 12, is seen at the Ueno Zoological Garden on May 23, 2022, in this photo provided by the Tokyo Zoological Park Society.

TOKYO – An event for preschoolers and caregivers to celebrate the first birthday of the popular giant panda twins at Ueno Zoological Garden in the Japanese capital is scheduled for June 20.

The event announced by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government will commemorate the first birthday of male panda Xiao Xiao and his twin Lei Lei. The twins were born on June 23, 2021. They grew steadily, with Lei Lei and Xiao Xiao eating apples for the first time on May 10 and May 13, respectively.

The anniversary event will take place in the Panda Forest area, located in the zoo’s West Garden in the capital’s Taito district. After a workshop to create celebratory message cards, attendees can show the twins gifts and cards and take commemorative photos, viewing the cubs for about 10-15 minutes.

About fifteen pairs will be able to take part in the event. Each pair must include a preschooler aged 3 or older and their guardian, and they must reside in Tokyo. Applications will be accepted until June 3 on the zoo’s website at https://www.tokyo-zoo.net/event/panda2022 (in Japanese), and the 15 pairs will be selected by lottery.

Additionally, a photo spot with a sign featuring the older sister of the Xiang Xiang twins will be installed in the East Garden of the zoo between June 7 and July 3 to mark Xiang Xiang’s fifth birthday on June 12. A panel featuring Lei Lei and Xiao Xiao is also set to be displayed.

(Japanese original by Kazuo Yanagisawa, Tokyo City News Department)

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