Sapporo Festival


Sapporo Festival (Sapporo matsuri)

***** Location: Sapporo, Hokkaido
***** Season: Mid-Summer
***** Category: Observance


Sapporo matsuri 札幌祭 (さっぽろまつり)
Sapporo festival

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June 14 - 17

Main festival at the shrine Hokkaido Jingu 北海道神宮.

This shrine was built by the early settlers during the Meiji period to pray for a safe harvest and stable life conditions in the snowy country.

Now the winter festival of the city is much more popular.


. Sapporo Snow Festival
Sapporo yukimatsuri 札幌雪まつり
Das Schneefest von Sapporo


The Hokkaidō Shrine (北海道神宮, Hokkaidō Jingū)
is a Shinto shrine located in Sapporo, Japan. Sited in Maruyama Park, Chūō-ku, Sapporo, the Hokkaido Shrine enshrines four kami including the soul of the Emperor Meiji. A number of contributors of the Exploration in Hokkaidō such as Mamiya Rinzō are also enshrined.

In 1869, by an order of the Emperor Meiji, a ceremony to enshrine three kami (Shinto deities); Ōkunitama, Ōkuninushi, and Sukunahikona, was held in Tokyo. They were enshrined as the three deities of the Hokkaido reclamation (開拓三神, Kaitaku Sanjin), and they were later moved to Sapporo by officers in the Kaitakushi, the previous government of Hokkaidō prefecture.

An interim building of the shrine for three kami was constructed in 1870 in Sapporo, although its location was different from the current point where the Hokkaidō Shrine stands. In 1871, the shrine was erected to the current place and named as the "Sapporo Shrine" (Sapporo Jinja), and on September 14 an inaugural ceremony was held.

From 1889 through 1946, Sapporo-jinja was officially designated one of the Kanpei-taisha (官幣大社), meaning that it stood in the first rank of government supported shrines.

The soul of the Emperor Meiji was newly enshrined to the shrine in 1964, and the building was officially renamed to the current "Hokkaido Shrine".The building was destroyed by the fire in 1974, and later restored in 1978.

From June 14 to 16 in every year, the Main festival of Hokkaido Shrine, also called "Sapporo Festival" (Sapporo Matsuri), is held, and the line of people bearing Mikoshi parades down the street which leads to the shrine. It also manages a Scouting activities.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


The Four Deities of the Hokkaido Shrine

1. "God of Okunitama"
God of the land of Hokkaido from which all things are able to be produced in nature.
2. "God of Onamuchi"(or by another name "Okuninushi")
God of making and developing the land.
3. "God of Sukunahikona"
God of healing who cooperates with Onamuchi to reclaim the land.
4. "God of Emperor Meiji"

Bronze statue of the head commissioner, Mr. Shima, who brought the gods on his shoulders and decided to choose the site of the present Shrine in 1869, and also planned the city of Sapporo. Few people lived i Sapporo at that time, but now, 1,640,000 people live in this city.

Major annual Festivals

1. Festival of New Year (Jan.1st).
Commemorates the first day of the year, praying for a peaceful world, for Japan, and the prosperity of the Imperial Household.
2. Festival of the parting of the seasons (Feb.3rd).
Commemorates the beginning of spring and ceremony of praying for the coming in of good fortune and driving out all devils by throwing beans.
3. Commemoration of the founding of Japan (Feb.11th).
Commemorates the founding of Japan by accession to the throne of Emperor Jinmu, 2645 years ago.
4. Festival of praying for the fertility of crops (Feb.17th).
Prayers for the prosperity of all kinds of industries and the fertility
of farm products.

5. Main festival of Hokkaido Shrine (Jun.14th-16th).
One of the 10 biggest festival in Japan, and the largest festival in Hokkaido (about 1,000,000 people).

6. The great purification ceremony (Jun.30th).
Purifying sins, and recharging the spirit.
7. Festival of the Pioneers Shrine (Aug.15th).
In honor of 34 men involved with the reclamation of Hokkaido. 500 children carry the portable shrines downtown.
8. Festival of memorial enshrined deities (Sept.1st).
Commemorates the enshrining of the 3 dieties in 1871.
9. Festival of Meiji (Nov.3rd).
Commemorates the birth of Emperor Meiji.
10. Thanksgiving festival (Nov.23rd).
Originated from the new rice festival, a festival to celebrate the first crop of the year, when the Japanese Emperor offers the new harvest of rice to the gods oh heaven and earth to thank them for the good hervest and to pray for future blessing. The Emperor himself eats the fresh rice in private with the gods.
11. Festival of present Emperor's birthday (Dec.23rd).
Offering the present Emperor our hearty congratulations for his long life.
12. The great purification ceremony (see Jun.30th).
Purification before welcoming the new year.

13. Monthly festivals
Every month the 1st, 10th, 15th and 20th at 10a.m. prayers for a peaceful world and for Japan, for the prosperity of the Imperial Household and Hokkaido.

source : Hokkaido Jingu Homepage .

Worldwide use

Things found on the way

Kani Honke 札幌かに本家
The Original Crab Restaurant in Sapporo

Sapporo Miso Ramen

Sapporo Beer

. Food from Sapporo .


Related words

***** . Amulets from Shrine Hokkaido Jingu .

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