Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

by glen on September 2, 2011

This summer many local companies and individuals came together to try and make a difference in the lives of people living in the earthquake and tsunami affected regions on the main island of Honshu. Groups were invited to stay in the Niseko Hirafu, property owners and management companies generously donated accommodation, the Japanese government offered subsidized travel assistance, local business donated services and local people volunteered time to help out.

The Niseko Tsunami Relief Program looked after the group and offered a large range of activities for participants from English lessons, games, all kinds to sports including hiking and much more – the weekly BBQ’s were also held drawing large numbers.

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

It was really good meeting some of participants and I went hiking a few times with different groups.
A lot to the kids from down south haven’t been able to get outdoors as much as usual so they were having lot’s of fun running around which was good to see.

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program
Locals helping out with BBQ duties !

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Near the BBQ venue I had never really taken much notice of the mini waterfall and pond in the park just below the J First hotel and it was nice to see the kids catching tadpoles and cooling down there during the hot weather.

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Niseko Tsunami Relief Program

Wishing all the participants the best back home.

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Hirafu Matsuri Delivers

by glen on August 21, 2011

After a doubtful start to the day with a heavy downpour threatening the festival the sun returned stalls were relocated to drier ground and the festival went on.
(click on the images to view them at a larger sizes)

Hirafu Matsuri

Young and old turned out in large numbers making this years festival a huge success.

Hirafu Matsuri

One of the activities that really united the festival goers was the Bon Odori Dance – in this Bon Odori Panorama you can see the dancers making their way around the festival tower in unison.

There were a huge number of food stalls providing an amazing array of international foods from traditional Japanese festival BBQ to Indian and french flavors.

One of the more spectacular events of the festival was the Mochi and Candy toss where people scrambled to grab as much as they could.

Hirafu Matsuri

Hirafu Matsuri

There was a brief spell of rain which sent everyone in search for cover but this didn’t last long before the fire was raging.

Hirafu Matsuri

Hirafu Matsuri

The Yotei Taiko Drumming group fired up the crowd with a typically energetic performance and i did my best to get down the front and stay low to shoot this Yotei Taiko Panorama unfortunately i didn’t have space to move my big head out of the way !!

I put my camera away for the final fireworks display and enjoyed the moment with my wife and friends.
Thanks to everyone who contributed towards producing the event – no doubt a great time had by all.

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Sunday Monday Cinema

by glen on July 4, 2011

Last night Sunday Monday Cinema held its opening night party and screening
of 180˚ South a film about adventure and environmentalism.
(click on the images to view them at a larger sizes)

Sunday Monday Cinema - Opening Party July 3rd

Sunday Monday Cinema is held every Sunday and Monday in Kutchan at the summer perennial summer favorite Pelican Burger

Sunday Monday Cinema - Opening Party July 3rd

Sunday Monday Cinema - Opening Party July 3rd

The set up in the shop is pretty cool with good image quality and sound so check it out when you get the chance – Kutchan now has a mini cinema YESSSSSS !

Sunday Monday Cinema - Opening Party July 3rd

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Downtown Cafe Opening Ay, caramba!

by glen on July 1, 2011

Last night Downtown cafe held its opening party for the 2011 summer season.
This year there has been a change in management team and Mexican is now on the menu.
I was lucky enough to get a taste of the the Nachos earlier in the day HOLA’
Sooooo good.

(click on the images to view them at a larger sizes)
Downtown Cafe Nachos

Downtown Cafe Opening

Downtown Cafe Opening

Anyone who has spent time sitting on the deck at Downtown in summer knows that this is THE spot in Hirafu to sit and watch the world go by. The cafe will be open for lunch and dinner so drop on by and check it out.
Gracias !

Downtown Cafe Opening

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Diary of Demolition – part 1

by glen on June 7, 2011

Over the last few weeks in Niseko Hirafu the landscape in the upper village has been undergoing a major transformation with the demolition of the Hotel Niseko Scot.

(click on the images to view them at a larger sizes)
Dairy of Demolition - Scot Hotel

The Hotel Niseko Scot has looked down over Hirafu village for the last 30 years or so but it is now in the final stages of demolition making way for THE ROCKS niseko resort

Dairy of Demolition - Scot Hotel

Back in 2006 i had the chance to shoot the onsen and dining area for a company i was working for at the time Niseko Ground Service
this one one of my first professional photography jobs in Niseko.

Dairy of Demolition - Scot Hotel

Dairy of Demolition - Scot Hotel

Dairy of Demolition - Scot Hotel

It has been with mixed feelings that i have been watching the building come down – on one hand a bit sad to see the much loved onsen popolo go but on the other hand amazing to see the mountain reclaiming the area and the new views that are appearing.

Dairy of Demolition - Scot Hotel

I have also been in awe of the skill and precision that the demolition crew.
The vast amount of debris that this one hotel has created has also reminded me of the mind boggling scale of the destruction the earthquake and tsunami was inflicted on Japan and the enormity of the rebuilding task at hand.
頑張れ日本 頑張って東北 

Hotel Niseko Scot Demolition

One thing is for certain the new development here in Hirafu will change the look of the village and i am really looking forward to seeing results.

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