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County News
Hot Air Balloon Night Glow Concert in Zhiben Announces Taitung Is Back on Its Feet Magistrate Huang Expresses Gratitude for Aid and Invites All to Support Taitung through Tourism
Date: 2016-07-17    
Typhoon Nepartak caused serious damage to Taitung, but with the help of government agencies and people from all over Taiwan (including the enthusiasm of volunteers from Taitung), the restoration has already entered its second phase. The hot air balloon night glow concert held on July 16 in Zhiben accordingly became known as “A Night of Gratitude.” The Taitung County Government, agencies and businesses from Beinan Township, and those in the hotel industry thanked people all over Taiwan for sending in material donations and manpower so as to jointly lift Taitung back on its feet. At the event, Magistrate Justin Huang announced that Taitung was taking off once again. He expressed hopes that people from all over Taiwan would come visit Taitung in active support of the county’s typhoon-stricken tourism industry. Furthermore, Doris Brougham of Studio Classroom canceled her company trip and very generously donated the NTD 300,000 allotted for it to the restoration of Taitung.

The July 16 “Rekindling the Happiness of Taitung” night glow concert held in the parking lot near the levee at the Zhiben hot springs area attracted over 10,000 spectators. In addition to six hot air balloons, the Hotel Royal Chihpen’s balloon was also there. Magistrate Huang, Deputy Magistrate Chen Jin-hu, Beinan Township Mayor Xu Wen-xian, County Council members Wang Fei-long and Zhang Zhuo-ran, General Manager Liu Zu-ning of the Hotel Royal Chihpen, Director Jiang Hui-qing of the Tourism Department, Director Xu Ming-xun of the International Development and Planning Department, Doris Brougham of Studio Classroom, and local Taitung musician Biung Wang were all present. Magistrate Huang, Deputy Magistrate Chen, Beinan Mayor Xu, and county government employees made a full 90-degree bow to express the sincerest of gratitude to everyone throughout Taiwan for their relief efforts and contributions. The event host also expressed gratitude to each of the government agencies from around Taiwan that have provided aid. As the hot air balloons were illuminated with the accompanying music, everyone present clapped with the tempo and enjoyed a wonderful evening.

In the beginning, Magistrate Huang thanked the 230,000 residents of Taitung County and those present from other locales. He stated that Taitung was hit by Typhoon Nepartak on July 8 with force-17 winds, breaking a 116-year-old record. A great amount of damage was sustained, yet with courage and determination, the people of Taitung got Taitung back on its feet within one week through their efforts and the help of government agencies and volunteers from all over Taiwan. The road to complete restoration is still long and Taitung still needs the support of everyone, and Huang took the opportunity to express the sincerest of gratitude to all who have participated in the relief effort. He announced that Taitung is ready to take off once again, and that all are welcome to come visit Taitung and support the tourism industry. Beinan Township Mayor Xu added that all the hotels in Zhiben were full that night, and as a result, he too expressed thanks to all for their active support of Taitung.

Magistrate Huang especially thanked Doris Brougham of Studio Classroom. Not only had she taken the time and effort to be at the event, she also donated the funds that were to be used for the celebration of her 90th birthday as well as a donation of NTD 300,000 to Taitung’s restoration.

Beinan Township Mayor Xu thanked people from all the agencies and organizations who have provided help and support. He stated, “We’re fine and Taitung is ready!” Even though Taitung was severely damaged, it has quickly been restored through the generosity and help of various sources. Xu prayed for the protection of Taitung and the people’s peace, thanking all involved for allowing the face of Taitung to be 90% restored within just one week.

The local band “Black Kids” and singer Biung Wang performed at the event as their own way to thank all who have helped Taitung. Originally, Wang had only come as a spectator. But when Magistrate Huang said to Wang, “Biung, since you’re here, why not sing a couple of songs for us?” Wang decided to express gratitude through the beauty of his voice.
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