Asahikawa Winter Festival !

by Gen, Kamikawa Sub-prefectural Office of Hokkaido Government

Asahikawa Snow Festival also closed on February 11(Mon.). Speaking of the visitors, citizens of Asahikawa City and adjacent cities and towns accounted for the most. Compared to Sapporo Snow Festival, it can be said that the festival is hand-made and domestic.
 But the kids are crazy for the chutes in the venue and slide down again and again until they are wore down and fed up with the repeat of the same action.
I have no kids, so I am not sure how many times the kids require the same action and how long it takes to feed them up with sliding.
 Locomotive Thomas is also  so popular in Asahikawa City that the group of the citizens exerted their best effort to make the sculpture of Thomas without sponsors.
This snow sculpture gained an award in the competition. The motif is manta.
The site for the festival was not so crowded like in Sapporo Snow Festival. It's very comfortable and peaceful. Commercial-based festival may be too complicated for the municipalities to run by themselves.  Actually Sapporo City throws down the festival chores to the private companies.
Ice statues need the sponsors because it requires backhoes and cranes to build up. Illuminated ice statues are so beautiful and sparkling that they play the role of protagonists in this festival.
Snow dome is another big draw for kids. They like cocooning in a narrow space like kittens.
Snow rafting is "in" in Asahikawa City and other part of Hokkaido nowadays. It seems that even Japanese people started to enjoy their lives in winter in various kinds of way. Like kids, to play is to learn, I think.. For inviting visitors from overseas, how to help them enjoying their stay and how to continue to figure out the new satisfying attraction are the  key of the business.

I think Kazu will come back soon with his face sun-tuned too much.

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