Zushi prepares to ban alcohol and music on its public beach

News & Views Tokyo Life - February 4th, 2014

One of the more popular spots on the Shonan beach scene may go dry by the time summer rolls around, as the local government of Zushi gets ready to consider an ordinance that will make it illegal to drink alcohol or listen to music on speakers at the public beach.

Hitting the sand is probably not the first thing on your mind at the moment, but come a few months from now, the warm weather will have you ready to head down to Kanagawa for some fun in the sun. And for most of us, “fun” probably involves an adult beverage or…three, and some tunes to go with them.

But during the last few years, the parties have seemed to go too late into the night for the residents of Zushi. There have also been reports of fights breaking out, and last summer, one person was stabbed to death in a yakuza-related dispute.

In response to what locals have called a noisy, “night club” atmosphere at some of the beach huts, the municipal government is looking to place a ban on alcohol and music played with speakers on the public beach at Zushi. The government intends to submit a draft revision of the rules for the Zushi public beach to the city assembly this month, and officials hope they will be able to enforce these rules by this year’s beach season.

Under the proposed rules, Zushi will be a lot more family-friendly, but a lot less fun for people whose idea of a good beach day doesn’t involve (just) acoustic music and soft drinks. Among the Shonan beaches, Zushi has one of the more international scenes and brings an interesting mix of people together; the prospect of it being being forcibly toned down is disappointing. And while policing the music will be straightforward enough, stopping every person from bringing liquor to the beach isn’t going to be easy. So, will you keep going even if the ban goes through, or will you look elsewhere for your Shonan fix come summer?

–Alec Jordan

Image: Sushicam/Flickr