Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The 63rd Sapporo Snow Festival


The 63rd Sapporo Snow Festival(第63回さっぽろ雪まつり) is being held at three sites from February 6th to 12th.
The festival shows 228 sculptures  modeled on famous buildings including Tsuruga Castle(鶴ヶ城) in Fukushima or  popular characters including Hatsune Miku(初音ミク) and characters from One Piece and Toriko(manga).

Unfortunately, the statue of Hatsune Miku collapsed due to rising temperatures today.

Snow and ice sculptures were made by members of the Ground Self-Defense Forces, Sapporo City officials, citizen volunteers, citizen groups, nongovernment organizations and foreign participants in the International Snow Statue Contest. Massive sculptures were built by the Ground Self-Defense Forces members and a volunteer group.

1. Odori Site  - snow and ice sculptures including five massive snow sculptures and 98 ones by citizens

 Odori Site  is in the Odori park.

Odori Park at the 62th festival

Odori Park at the 62th festival
























the 58th festival




58th festival







59th estival



59th festival




59th festival


59th festival
 








60th festival



61st festival




Self Defense Force members
at 58th festival

Self Defense Force members used to build most of the massive snow sculptures at the festival. Tsuruga Castle was built by the members this year.




Self Defense Force members
at the 62nd festival

The members carry most of the snow for sculpting to the sites.





at the 58th festival

They spent one month building the sculptures, but all of the sculptures will be demolished the day after the closing day.




at the 58th festival



at the 6oth  festival

The International Snow Statue Contest is also held during this period.


at the 61st festival





at the 61st festival



at the 62nd festival



at the 62nd festival



at the 62nd festival



at the 62nd festival




at the 62nd festival


at the 62nd festival









at the 62nd festival


at the 62nd festival





at the 62nd festival

















2. Tsudome Site - snow attractions

"Welcome to our snow festival!" from a little snowman
at the 61st festival




Peopel are making small snowmen at the 60th festival.

at the 60th festival
 
snowmen colony(?)


at the 60th festival
 
snow slide





at the 61st festival
 
snow slide for kids



people  are making snow sculptures
at the 60th festival

high school students at the 60th festival











3. Susukino Site - ice sculptures

at the 61st festival
 There are a yakitori(char-broiled chicken) restaurant and a ramen(Chinese-style noodles) shop behind ice sculptures.


ice bar at the 58th festival

Susukino is a major red-light district that boasts many restaurants, bars, hotels, and adult-entertainment establishments.



at the 61st festival




at the 6oth festival
 Local people say that a woman can walk the streets of Susukino alone at night with the exception of a few sections, there are many restaurants with reasonable prices and good taste, and foreign tourists come to Ramen Alley.

Years ago, I had a dinner with my sister in this district at night. That was a good meal. I felt no sensation of danger.



at the 62nd festival
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


at the 58th festival
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


white crane at the 58th festival
  
photo by the City of Sapporo


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 




2 comments:

  1. Thank you, Ichinen, for these amazing "ice"-photos!! What a huge statues!! How should people feel: humble?, when they are walking along those statues? I think it is good (like the Japanese people do) celebrating the seasons! I enjoy your posts with the Japanese cultural background very much, thank you for sharing it.
    As I told you already: I'm building an Japanese teahouse, but because it's too cold I can not work in my workspace this winter, there is no heating.
    Overhere in Holland we've got a very little "polar"-cold: -10 OC!! I've put a post on my blog, that I'll feed the birds. But another blogster (Ludmilla) let me know that in Poland it was freezin -23 oC!! So what is cold??:)
    Have a nice day, Ilona

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    Replies
    1. People enjoy to see huge statues. The festival attracts many tourists from all over the world.

      I heard a week-long cold wave has hit Europe. You've been through a lot.
      It's also cold in Japan. The areas along the Sea of Japan are experiencing extraordinarily heavy snowfall. In the areas on the Pacific Ocean side including Tokyo and Yokohama, the winters are dry and marked by many clear days. We have had few days with temperature below freezing in Yokohama, but it's cold this winter.
      It was very warm a couple of days ago and a snow statue in Sapporo collapsed, but the cold weather has returned.
      Several areas in Hokkaido, the monthly mean minimum temperature in January was around -20 degrees Celsius and the monthly minimum temperature was around -30 degrees.

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