Coming of Age Day (Seijin no Hi). Japanese have been celebrating this holiday from long ago, though it was established officially only in 1948. Since 2000 the second Monday of January was set as a celebration day. Coming of Age Day is held to congratulate and encourage girls and boys who have reached their age of majority (20 years old in Japan) over the past year. At this age youngsters become adults gaining all their rights and obligations.
In Japan they have the right to participate in the elections, acquire full adult rights, bear legal responsibilities – young people become full citizens of their country. By Japanese laws it is the age of 20 when you are allowed to smoke tobacco and drink spirits.
Local authorities and some educational institutions hold special ceremonies at which the heroes of the occasion are awarded with souvenirs and written greetings stating the landmarks of the year passed. Having a lot of festivities and fun during this Day, Japanese youngsters feel all the advantages of complete freedom. Some of them can get too much in alcoholic libation. Fairly often such "adults” cannot get home without assistance but on this day it is not shameful.