By Kristen E. Strubberg Editor-in-Chief
On 2 February 2015 the 66th Annual Sapporo Snow Festival opened its delightfully chilly doors to a winter wonderland filled with ice and snow sculptures. One particular sculpture catching attendees’ eyes is a scene featuring Star Wars’ Darth Vader, complete with “ice-saber”, his ever-ready Storm Troopers, and even a couple of TIE Fighters for good measure. While the design came from LucasFilm (and approved by Disney), the annual Snow Star Wars display is constructed by Japanese soldiers. This year’s piece is 23 meters wide and 15 meters tall. The Japanese Ground Self-Defense Forces’ 11th Brigade ultimately used 3,500 tonnes of snow for the creation.
This year the annual Star Wars sculpture aimed at promoting Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens.
The Sapporo festival began in 1950 with six snow “statues” made by high-school students. It has only grown since then! The festival also hosts The International Snow Sculpture Competition which this year features twelve teams from as diverse places as Australia and Thailand.
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