China's traditional lovers' festival of Qixi on Wednesday spurred business for retailers and entertainment venues still reeling from the deadly July 5 riots in the northwestern region of Xinjiang.
"We seldom hang out since the violence, but my wife and I hope to enjoy the day," said Jiang Yaowen, after buying two tickets to a movie at the People's Cinema in downtown Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
At the Oscar International Cinema, more than 50 young people registered for a singles party in the evening.
"We want to help them to find their life partners," said Chen Yong, the cinema manager.
"Business has remained sluggish since the riot. We used to receive audiences of almost 4,000 a day before the riot, but they've been down by two thirds since then," said Chen.
"The Qixi festival prompted movie viewers to flood back," he said.
Sales at shopping centers and promotions of lovers' meals and gifts also attracted young couples.
A young man, who only identified himself as Qin, bought a bunch of roses decorated with miniature dolls for his girlfriend.
"I hope this will delight her," Qin said.