Hakodate has a special connection to Russia. In the wild west frontier days of the Meiji period, Russia had a significant influence on Hakodate with a Russian delegation being one of the first foreign consulates to be established after the opening up of Japan in the early 1860s.
To celebrate this connection, the Hakodate Russian Festival has been held since 1994. Part of the festival is the tradition of Maslenitsa – a Russian orthodox celebration similar in significance to the start of lent.
There will also be a ‘Russian Cafe’, introduction to Russian language classes and a ‘play with chess’ session.
The venue for the festival is the Russian Far East Federal University, Hakodate Campus.