On February 23rd and 24th, Sapporo Dome will host the 17th annual Toyota Big Air event, a world championship straight jump snowboarding contest.
The first Toyota Big Air was held in 1997 at the Makomanai Outdoor Stadium.  Musical and performing artists also joined the event, and despite sub-zero temperatures in the outdoor venue, people filled the seats every winter and made it quite a popular event. 
In 2012, the Toyota Big Air was moved to Sapporo Dome, making for much more comfortable viewing conditions.  Inside the dome, an extra large, 45 degree jump, with a height of 36 meters and a length of 125 has been constructed.  With snowboard superstars and popular performing artists,   this is an event not to be missed!
For more information about the competition and the participants, check out the Toyota Big Air website (bottom).  For those of you are not really into the competition part, there’s still a lot of fun to be had and we’ll tell you how.
For starters, you will be amazed at the shear size of the event.  The construction and preparations have been quite the undertaking.  There’s even a USTREAM of the construction process available.
・ 250 tons of snow
・ 1000 tons of steel frames
・ 3000 workers
・ 400 vehicles (including trucks)
・ 9 days of construction 
The seats in the arena have been removed to leave only free-seating bleachers.  This allows viewers to get as close as possible to the action, but just the sight of the enormous jump is impressive. 
From the side, the size seems almost unreal.
The popular HTB character, On Chan, will appear on stage with some of his friends. What I am really hoping to see is On chan’s jump!  It’s become a bit of a tradition over the years, but will we be able to see it this year too?  I’m really looking forward to it.  You never know when the jump will happen though, so keep your eyes pealed throughout the event! 
Wearing skis, he takes off from the same spot as the other participants.  This series of shots was taken from last year’s incredible jump.   
Into the air he went!
A little trouble with the landing... 
One person to watch out for this year is up-and-comer, Yuki Kadono (16).  Until now there hasn’t been a single Japanese champion of the competition - the best has been 3rd place.  Maybe this year Kadono can change all that and become the first Japanese champion of Toyota Big Air!
With 250 tons of snow brought into the dome, it seems people from all over Japan come to see the event.  Even though it’s an indoor venue, you’ll get cold over time to be sure to dress warmly.  The seats are cold too, so you might want to bring a cushion to sit on.
Children (up to third year elementary) can play for free in the On Chan bouncy dome, and there will be variety of food and drink shops set up within the arena.   Kids under 12 and adults over 60 may also attend the event for free, so why not bring the whole family?
Venue    Sapporo Dome (札幌市豊平区羊ヶ丘1番地)
Feb. 23 (Sat)   12:15 Start ( Doors open at 11:00 )
Feb. 24 (Sun)   12:20 Start ( Doors open at 11:30 )
[ Tickets ]
* Free for children under twelve (must be escorted by a guardian).
* Free for adults over the age of 60 (ID required).
・ Advance Sales
Feb. 23 (Sat)  1,000 Yen
Feb. 24 (Sun) 3,500 Yen
Sat/Sun Set    4,000 Yen
Available via Lawson Tickets, Ticketpia, and Playguide. 
・ Gate Sales
Feb. 23 (Sat)  1,500 Yen
Feb. 24 (Sun) 4,000 Yen
Sold at Sapporo Dome
[ Performing Artists ]
Throughout the two days, you’ll find a fun-filled variety of artists and styles among the performers.
Feb. 23 (Sat)  Fear, and Loathing in Las Vegas/MAN WITH A MISSION
Feb. 24 (Sun)  Flumpool/SKE48(16 members)
[ TV Broadcast ]
Broadcasts of the TOYOTA BIG AIR event can be seen following the final selection on HTB and on Sunday evening, from 12:45 – 1:40, via TV Asahi,  Keiretsu Zenkoku Net.  Hokkaido natives and comedic duo, Heisei Nobushikobushi and Nana Suzuki will be making guest entertainers at Sapporo Dome.      
And for On Chan fans…
[ Free App:  On-Kame ]
See pictures of On Chan at the dome throughout the event.  (PC) (Smartphones)
[ UST Broadcast ]
February 20 (Wed.) From 7:30 PM, On chan will be broadcasting from Sapporo Dome.
Photos provided in part by HTB
( Hokkaido Likers Photo Writer – Eri Makino )