• On December 13, the Kamikawa Taisetsu Sake Brewery (Kamikawa, northern Hokkaido) began brewing its first batch of local sake, “Goryo-no-kura” for the first time in 54 years, at its newly completed brewery in Kameo-cho in the city of Hakodate. The first batch of the sake will be completed at the beginning of January and be available for sale in late January.

  • This year's installment has started for the annual tradition "Hoshi no Yume" (Dream of Stars) event, which lights up the nationally designated special historic site Goryokaku Remains in the city of Hakodate. On the evening of December 4, a commemorative firework show was held. When the decorative lights were turned on, a giant star shape made of light shone across the area, welcoming tourists together with the fireworks that brilliantly lit the night sky.

  • Hakodate's major winter event, 2021 Hakodate Christmas Fantasy, launched on December 1. Illumination also started up in areas spanning throughout Hakodate, wrapping the city in warm light.

  • Hokkaido Airports Co., Ltd. (Chitose) and Hakodate Airport Terminal Building Co., Ltd. (Hakodate) have begun a verification experiment of a ‘remote guidance service’ at the General Information Desk on the first floor of the Domestic Passenger Terminal Building of Hakodate Airport, where staff members answer users' questions via an avatar (animated character) on the screen. The experiment, the first of its kind in Hokkaido, was conducted until December 8.

  • The National Institute of Technology, Hakodate College, located in the city of Hakodate, held a completion ceremony on November 19 for a new International Dormitory – a shared-house-type accommodation for both Japanese and international students – with the aim of developing human resources with a global perspective. Conversation in the dormitory is limited to English, and the goal is to promote mutual understanding of culture and customs through daily interaction. The dormitory is also equipped with a base for holding foreign language classes for local residents, and the college plans to enhance international exchanges.

  • The search for the next top ocean scientists is in progress. In hopes of cultivating the next generation of fishery science specialists, the Hokkaido University Graduate School of Fisheries Sciences (Hakodate City) is focusing on making educational materials publicly accessible on the Internet. Using videos and other materials, this is an environment that is not limited to only Hokkaido University students, where anyone can casually access ocean scholarship. It is a format that could even be called a new kind of "future investment" that provides learning which transcends the barriers of the college campus.

  • The sun drying of daikon radishes for pickling is reaching its peak in various parts of southern Hokkaido. The sight of the radishes, like white blinds swaying in the cold breeze, provides a feeling of late autumn.

  • "Fuji Reika" is an ice cream shop in the Southern Hokkaido city of Hakodate that produces and sells the ice cream called "Dassai Sake Kasu Ice", and it has recently started exporting that product to China. Sake producer Asahi Shuzo (Yamaguchi Prefecture) supplies the sake kasu (a brewing byproduct) for the ice cream, and is also involved in the export plans. Exports started at 24,000 units up front this first month alone. For November, they have received orders for 168,000 units. This is the first large-scale exporting of this ice cream brand, and the shop expressed surprise that, "ice cream made by a small family run shop should garner this level of response."

  • A giant ‘kagami-mochi’ rice cake weighing approximately 100 kg was offered at the Kameda Hachimangu Shrine in the Hachiman-cho district of the city of Hakodate on September 10, as part of a prayer ceremony carried out by the Association of Southern Hokkaido Agricultural Cooperative Chairs –– in which wishes were made to end the COVID-19 pandemic and to promote rice-cake food culture.

  • The Sasaki couple owns a winery in Hakodate, and it has been ten years since they launched a farm field in the neighboring city of Hokuto. Their decision to not use filtration or antioxidants gives their wine a pure, natural flavor. They ship about 13,000 bottles per year, and stock shelves at about 50 liquor stores nationwide. The wine sells out so quickly, they are often called, "The Ghost Wine".