Emperor Akihito, the present Emperor, was born on December 23, 1933. This has been a national holiday since 1989. One this day, the Nijubashi, or the main gate of the Imperial Palace, is open to the public. The Emperor and the family make a personal appearance on the second-floor balcony of the Imperial Palace to greet people who shout “banzai” three times and wave small national flags. Cabinet ministers are invited to attend a reception and ambassadors and foreign ministers are invited to tea party in the Palace.