Taipei, Oct. 8 (CNA) A Taoist temple in central Taiwan said Tuesday that it plans to hand out some 4,000 free 'lucky caps' over the four-day National Day weekend, in response to high demand since an athlete wearing one finished first in a major international race last month.
Shun Tse Temple in Puyan Township, Changhua County, said it will give away 1,000 caps each day during the holiday period Oct 10-13 to people who had not been able to order them in advance.
The temple has been flooded with orders for the cap since early September, when Norwegian athlete Gustav Iden crossed the finish line first in a triathlon in France, wearing a baseball cap with the temple's name on it.
Initially, anyone who put in an order for the cap was given one free of cost, but due to the high demand, the temple stopped accepting orders after Sep. 15, temple official Wei Hsin-ku (魏信顧) said at a press conference Tuesday.
However, thanks to a donation of NT$200,000 by worshippers, the temple has been able to obtain another 4,000 caps, which will be made available to the public during the upcoming four-day holiday, Wei said, extending an invitation for people to visit Changhua in central Taiwan.
Before the cutoff date on Sept. 15, he said, the temple had received orders for about 41,000 caps, 33,000 of which have already been collected.
People who have not yet picked up their orders will have until the end of October to do so, Wei said.
The cap, bearing the name of the temple in Chinese, was worn by 23-year-old Iden in the 70.3-kilometer 2019 Ironman World Championship in Nice on Sept. 8, after he reportedly found it on the street in Tokyo the previous month.