An unexpected collaboration between an idol live-streaming service and a non-profit organization produces a stunning picture of summer.

A traditional addition to any summer wardrobe in Japan, the yukata is a robe-like garment worn during muggy, sweltering months. Typically made out of breathable material such as cotton, it’s considered a symbol of summer, and depending on the way it’s worn, a traditional garment for the deceased. To celebrate this piece of traditional attire, every year the National Japanese Yukata Appreciation Society holds a pageant to select representatives for the Miss Yukata Japan title.

Originally meant to debut at this year’s Olympics to highlight the beauty of the yukata and muster awareness of the yukata amongst overseas visitors, this year’s eight chosen beauties were instead featured in a special video spread created via a collaboration between the National Japanese Yukata Appreciation Society and macheTV, an idol live-streaming service.

Shot in Gunma prefecture, the setting of the production is set in Ikaho city’s Ikaho Onsen. Onsen, otherwise known as “hot springs” in English, are popular as sites of relaxation, and Ikaho Onsen is particularly known for its iron-rich waters.

▼ The eight chosen representatives were split between two videos for this special project.

Wearing vibrant yukata, the 2020 Miss Yukata Japan representatives are depicted relishing in the amenities of Ikaho Onsen. From relaxing in one of the onsen’s open-air baths to playing ping pong, viewers will definitely feel Ikaho Onsen’s appeal.

▼ A simple glance from outside their hotel room shows a sprawling town framed by mountains and embedded in an emerald green relief.

▼ An open-air bath for ultimate me-time.

▼ There’s nothing comparable to the feeling of playing ping pong after a thorough soak in a hot spring.

The 2020 Miss Yukata-Japan representatives also explore Ikaho city, making their way through quaint surroundings and taking in Ikaho’s charming atmosphere.

▼ Garbed in yukata, the girls enjoy a variety of activities such as praying at a shrine…

▼ … posing with their prizes from carnival games…

▼ … and eating shaved ice.

While it’s a bummer that the chosen representatives can’t debut in Tokyo due to the postponement of the Olympics and COVID-19 struggles, at least they’re able to represent one of Japan’s traditional clothing items in a gorgeous, soothing setting. As Japan waits for better days to come, and travelers to return, for now the video collaboration works as a vivid snapshot of a Japanese summer.

Source: YouTube/macheTV (1, 2) via PR Times
Featured image: YouTube/macheTV
Insert images: YouTube/macheTV (1, 2)

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