Wow, how time flies. We are nearly three fourths into 2017 and the Japanese Community Association has been very active.
In the month of April we hosted the Shibukawa delegation with their participation with the Merrie Monarch Festival and parade. This was a special year celebrating their 20th Anniversary of the Hawaiian Festival in Shibukawa/Ikaho.
In the month of May, 2017 we had our 4th Annual Nikkei Kigyo Recognition Banquet. This year we had the honor of recognizing Dodo Mortuary, Inc founded in 1898 and The Seaside Restaurant founded in 1921. Roland Higashi and his committee did an outstanding job.
In June, the County of Hawaii invited the JCAH to participate in a dinner reception with Sister City, Kumejima Island, Okinawa. The 30 plus delegation were here on an exchange symposium at NEHLA in Kona.
Also in June, participated in the Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry of Hawaii installation and fellowship activities with the delegation from Higashi-Hiroshima Chamber of Commerce.
In July, we participated in the 45th Anniversary of the Urasenke Hilo Association. Attended a Formal Tea Ceremony at Hilo Daijingu with Grand Master Sen. There was a wonderful luncheon at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel. After lunch, there was a Formal Tea Ceremony celebrating Queen Lili’uokalani and JCAH got to participate in a Matsu tree planting ceremony.
August was a very special month, Mike Miyahira and yours truly attended the Hawaiian Festival in Shibukawa/Ikaho, Japan. Also participating from Hawaii were Wil Okabe, managing director of the COH and his wife Merle and Council Chair, Valerie Poindexter and her executive assistant, Kaci Tsuneda. Mayor Akutsu of Shibukawa City and Takahiro Omori of the Shibukawa Ikaho Onsen Tourism Association were tremendous hosts and made the trip a most memorable one.
Also in August, co-chairs, Delbert Nishimoto and Hiroshi Suga did an outstanding job on the 78th Annual Ireisai Hoyo Memorial Service at the Alae Cemetery on August 27, 2017. The annual service is for us to remember and thank our Japanese ancestors, the Issei immigrants, who established their legacy through hard work and sacrifice.
By the time you read this newsletter the 16th Annual Kenjinkai Golf Tournament will be completed. We will have the results to you in the next newsletter. We want to thank Allan Sasahara for chairing this annual tournament. He does such an excellent job.
We would like to express our appreciation to Jan Higashi and Paul Sakamoto, co-chairs of the Cultural Committee and their respective committee chairs for organizing our 9th Annual Bunka No Hi – Japanese Cultural Day to be held on Saturday, November 18, 2017 at Honpa Hongwanji Hilo Betsuin Sangha Hall. They have planned an array of cultural activities and we encourage our membership to participate and enjoy the experience. Please mark your calendars and don’t miss this exciting event.
The past nine months have been exciting and a unique learning experience for me. By being able to participate in the many activities, it has truly made me appreciate our Japanese Culture and the essence of “Okage Sama De”. Thank you.