In case you were wondering, the German Maibaum (maypole) in the very first picture was donated by Munich, Sapporo's sister city.
And the gentlemen building the largest snow sculptures are Japan's Self Defense Force. Japan has the world's 4th largest defense budget. Building snow sculptures is a great public relations idea. Maybe the US forces stationed in Okinawa should try something similar to get over their bad reputation.
All images copyright 2000 Tamiko Thiel and Peter Graf.
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