Exploring the Sapporo Snow Festival (さっぽろ雪まつり)
The city of Sapporo in northern Japan has hosted its weeklong snow festival every year since 1950. The first festival had only six participants––local high school students who built six modest snow statues in Odori Park. Now, millions of people visit the festival to view over 200 elaborate snow statues and ice sculptures. Often the statues depict notable events, places or people from the previous year. This year, there are replicas of Thailand’s Wat Bendamabophit Temple, Taipei’s Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall and Japan’s Kabuki-za Theater, as well as sculptures of anime characters Hatsune Miku, Kasane Teto and Sekka Yufu.