Popular bell-tolling event on New Year’s Eve to resume after two-year hiatus

South Korea will resume its annual bell-tolling ceremony to celebrate New Year’s Eve after two years of suspension due to COVID-19.
The ceremony hosted by the Seoul metropolitan government will take place at 11:30 p.m. Saturday at Bosingak Pavilion in central Seoul with about 100,000 people attending.
Cho Gue-sung, a member of the national football team who competed in the World Cup in Qatar, painter-actress Jung Eun-hye of the popular TV drama “Our Blues,” and honorary ambassador of Seoul and comedian Kim Tae-kyun will be among the 10 civil representatives to join the ceremony, city officials said.
The annual New Year’s Eve bell-ringing celebration has been held without an in-person audience for the past two years due to the pandemic.
To prevent overcrowding, this year’s event will be held simultaneously at Bosingak, Gwanghwamun Square and Dongdaemun Design Plaza and broadcast online.
Traffic will be blocked around the Bosingak area from 9 p.m. Saturday to 1:30 a.m. Sunday for safety reasons. Subway trains will also pass Jongak Station in the area without stopping from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m.
To reach out to a wider audience, the city will also invite 22 popular YouTubers whose combined viewership reaches 21.3 million, the officials said.
A music concert of “gukak” (Korean traditional music) artists and poppera singers will accompany the bell tolling to add to the festive mood.
Crowds of people descended on popular sunset spots across the country. The crowds came to view the year’s last sunset to look back on this year and wish for happiness in the new year.
The government banned sunset and sunrise events at national parks and major spots for the past couple of years amid the pandemic.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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