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Imperial Crown Prince Allowed to Run Outside in Public for First Time in 7 Years

translated by Brett Larner

Imperial Crown Prince Hironomiya enjoyed jogging a loop of the popular running course around the outside of the Imperial Palace on Feb. 25.  The Prince runs daily inside the grounds of the Crown Prince's Palace in Akasaka, Tokyo, but this was the first time he was allowed to run out in public in 7 years.

Accompanied by Imperial Household Agency officials, the Prince began his run around 3:20 p.m. from Kikyo Gate on the Tokyo Station side of the Palace.  Under cloudy skies he completed the 5 km course in 27:20.  After finishing he smiled as he commented, "It was neither too cold nor too hot.  It was a truly comfortable run."

No announcement about the run was made beforehand, so pedestrians and other runners on the course were caught by surprise.  One woman called out, "Your Majesty!" to which the Crown Prince responded with a wave.  The Prince last ran the loop around the Imperial Palace in February, 2007.  In March, 2008 he was allowed out to run the loop around the outside of the Akasaka Palace grounds.


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