Written by MATCHA-PR
Experience Ainu Culture At The Lake Akan On-Ice Festival 2019
The Lake Akan On-Ice Festival 2019 features a special program of activities introducing Ainu culture. Participants can watch Ainu dances and traditional music performances, taste Ainu dishes and learn more about this people's coexistence with nature.
An Exciting Ainu Culture Festival - Just this once in AKAN
Picture courtesy of SAP Corporation
Lake Akan, one of the major lakes of Hokkaido, has been the venue of the Lake Akan On-Ice Festival for 40 years. The 41st Lake Akan On-Ice Festival will feature a special program of activities introducing Ainu culture from February 22nd through the 24th, 2019. The Title of the program is Midwinter Nature & An Exciting Ainu Culture Festival - Just this once in AKAN.
The Ainu are an indigenous people of Hokkaido, with a distinctive culture and language that formed through the peaceful coexistence with nature since ancient times.
Akanko Ainu Kotan, located on the shore of Lake Akan, is the largest Ainu village in Japan. It houses the Lake Akan Ainu Theater Ikor, as well as souvenir shops and dining places where visitors can experience Ainu culture.
Ainu Culture Festival - Highlights of the Event
Exciting Ainu Cultural Experiences & Forum
Pictures courtesy of SAP Corporation
Venue: Lake Akan Ainu Theater Ikor
Time: February 23 (Sat.) 15:00 - 17:00 (*The venue opens at 14:30)
This forum allows visitors to learn about the culture of the Ainu people through their traditional performing arts. After watching performances of Ainu musical instruments such as mukkuri (mouth harp) and tonkori (a five-string instrument), participants can actually try their hand at playing the mukkuri.
This is also an opportunity to watch performances of Ainu dances, such as the famous Crane Dance in which performers imitate the flight and behavior of red-crowned cranes, one of the rare birds that can be seen at Lake Akan.
Ainu Cultural Activity Programs
Visitors can learn about the features of the natural environment around Lake Akan and about Ainu culture through seven activity programs that will be held from February 22nd through the 24th in the Akan area.
These include: blowing frozen soap bubbles and flying sky lanterns on the surface of the frozen Lake Akan (Feb. 23, 17:00 - 19:30), Ainu food tasting (free of charge, Feb. 23, 19:00 - 20:00), a midwinter fat bike tour on the frozen Lake Akan (Feb. 22, 10:00 - 11:00; Feb. 23, 20:30 - 21:30), a morning cafe tour - enjoying coffee with a great view of Lake Akan and Mt. Oakan (Feb. 23, 6:20 - 7:50; Feb. 24, 6:20 - 7:50), a snow walk through the mud volcano forest (Feb. 23, 9:00 - 11:30), a walk through the Mystical Forest Hikari no Mori (Feb.24, 9:00 - 11:30), and more.
For more details on these programs, please refer to the official website of the event: https://www.sap-co.jp/en/events/akan/
Other Events to Look Forward to!
Picture courtesy of SAP Corporation
The Ainu Fire Ritual and a show of fireworks on Lake Akan can also be enjoyed throughout the Lake Akan On-Ice Festival.
In addition, on February 23, there will be a special live performance by popular Japanese singer Hitomi Shimatani on a special stage built on the frozen surface of Lake Akan.
Directions to Lake Akan
Lake Akan can be easily reached from Tancho Kushiro Airport by taking the Airport Liner, a highway bus connecting Kushiro Airport and Akanko Onsen. To see the bus timetable and details on fares and seat reservation, please refer to this website: http://en.kushiro-lakeakan.com/airportliner/info/
Supported by SAP Corporation