The 66th Cherry Blossom Festival contestants were introduced at the Ohana Festival. They are (from left): Mika Nakashige, Colette Masunaga, Kristen Yamamoto, Kaydi Hashima, Rhianna Taniguchi, Ariel Stenek, Melanie Carrié, Joy Nakahara, Kylie Hisatake, Chelsea Briggs, Cindy Nakagawa, Renni Iwasa, Karly Kaneshiro, Shelby Meador and Jordie Ocenar. (Photo courtesy Cherry Blossom Festival)

Spotlight – Cherry Blossom Festival Queen Contestants Introduced

The 66th Cherry Blossom Festival got its official kick-off on Jan. 14 with the introduction of the 15 queen contestants at the New Year’s ‘Ohana Festival, presented by the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i. The Cherry Blossom Festival is sponsored annually by the Honolulu Japanese Junior Chamber of Commerce. This year’s festival theme is Inspire.....
Kazuo Yamane uses his bunk to study at the Military Intelligence Service Language School at Camp Savage, Minn. (Photos courtesy Yamane family)

Spotlight – “Proof of Loyalty” to screen at HIFF

SPOTLIGHT BY Karleen C. Chinen Pamela Rotner Sakamoto came to understand the invaluable, but secret, work that soldiers in the Military Intelligence Service performed in World War II while writing her own book, “Midnight in Broad Daylight: A Japanese American Family Caught Between Two Worlds,” about the family of MIS veteran Harry Fukuhara. So when....
The 2017 Hui Makaala scholarship recipients were recognized at the scholarship fashion show luncheon. They are from left: Briana Campbell, Nikki Chinen, David-John Fernandez, Treyson Furuta, Emma Kojima, Cheyne Tanoue, Kiaria Zoi Nakamura and Dane Yamashiro. Pictured with them is Hui Makaala president Clayton Uza (far right). Not pictured: Sydney Tsukenjo.

Community Focus – Hui Makaala Holds Fundraising Fashion Show

Hui Makaala held its 48th annual Scholarship Fund Luncheon and Fashion Show on July 30 at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Coral Ballroom. The show featured fashions by three Hawai‘i designers — Allison Izu, Janice Tsujimura and Jeanie Chun. The audience was also treated to a program of cultural entertainment that included Okinawan dances by Hooge....
Onizuka siblings Claude Onizuka and Shirley Matsuoka and astronaut Col. Edward Michael Fincke of the NASA astronaut office at the bust of Ellison Onizuka on his 71st birthday, which was marked by the opening of the Ellison Onizuka Remembrance at JCCH.

Spotlight – Astronaut Ellison Onizuka Collection Finds New Home at JCCH

SPOTLIGHT BY Karleen C. Chinen Beloved Hawai‘i astronaut Ellison Onizuka’s 71st birthday was remembered and celebrated on June 24 with the opening of “The Ellison Onizuka Remembrance” at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i. The collection is now part of the center’s “Okage Sama De: I am what I am because of you” permanent exhibit.....
Hooge Ryu Hana Nuuzi no Kai Nakasone Dance Academy keiki gave guests a preview of what they can expect at the Oct. 21 dance concert.

Spotlight – Nakasone Dance Academy Plans Oct. 21 Concert at Blaisdell

Hooge Ryu Hana Nuuzi no Kai Nakasone Dance Academy will celebrate its 61st anniversary with a grand dance program this fall. The Okinawan dance school was started by Lynne Yoshiko Nakasone shortly after she immigrated to Hawai‘i as the young bride of Clarence Tomokazu Nakasone. Over the decades Nakasone-Sensei has passed on the art to....
From left: JCCH board chair Christine Kubota; Consul General of Japan Yasushi Misawa; Hawai‘i Gov. David Ige; Kaua‘i Mayor Bernard Carvalho; honorees Kenny and Chizuko Endo of Taiko Center of the Pacific; honorees Barry Masuo, Ethel Yamane and Ethel Hasegawa, representing the JCCH Gift Shop Visionaries; honoree Tsukasa Harufuku of JTB Hawaii Inc.; honorees Mabel and Norman Hashisaka of Kauai Kookies; honoree Dean Okimoto of Nalo Farms and JCCH president/executive director Carole Hayashino.

Community Focus – JCCH Honors Six at “Sharing the Spirit of Aloha” Gala

The Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i recognized six individuals, organizations and volunteers at its annual “Sharing the Spirit of Aloha” gala on June 17 at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, Coral Ballroom. The honorees were recognized for their dedication to culture and the arts, commitment to the promotion of Japanese culture, contributions to the community, leadership....
The fashion show co-chairs with featured designers of “Kagirinaki Yume (Boundless Dreams),” the 37th fashion show presented by the Japanese Women’s Society Foundation. From left; Kensei Takeda, Cathy Iwai, Amos Kotomori, Suzette Lau Hee, Kini Zamora and Hiroko Dewitz.

Community Focus – Japanese Women’s Society Foundation Presents 37th Fashion Show

“Kagirinaki Yume (Boundless Dreams)” was the theme of the 37th fashion show presented by the Japanese Women’s Society Foundation on May 6 at the Prince Waikiki. The event was a fundraiser for the organization’s scholarship program and other gerontology-related projects, including Kuakini Home. The program was emceed by Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i board chair....
Group photo of Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai members and Hiroshima Goodwill Ambassadors - (seated, from left) Kathleen Kiyuna, Roy Shimamoto, Stanley Gono and Ken Kimura. Standing behind them (from left) are: recognition chair Ken Saiki, Hiroshima Goodwill Ambassadors Kano Ishibashi and Momoko Fukuyama and HHKK president Wayne Miyao.

Honolulu Hiroshima Members Greet 2017

The Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai held its annual membership meeting and shinnen enkai on March 12 at Natsunoya Tea House. Also in attendance was a delegation from Hiroshima, including Hiroshima’s Goodwill Ambassadors. Kenjinkai president Wayne Miyao convened a general membership meeting prior to the lunch and entertainment portion of the program, calling on the various....
Wreaths offered by government officials and community groups surround the Ehime Maru Memorial at Kaka‘ako Waterfront Park.

Spotlight – Ehime Maru 17th Anniversary Memorial Ceremony Observed

Sixteen years ago, the USS Greeneville, a nuclear-powered submarine practicing a high-speed surfacing maneuver off O‘ahu’s south shore, struck the Ehime Maru, an Uwajima Fisheries High School training ship from Ehime, Japan, puncturing a hole in its hull. Within minutes, the ship began to sink. The Feb. 9, 2001, tragedy took the lives of nine....
Image of “An Internment Odyssey: Haisho Tenten,” written by Suikei Furuya

“An Internment Odyssey: Haisho Tenten” Book Launch Party

WHO/WHAT: The long-awaited release of “An Internment Odyssey: Haisho Tenten,” written by Suikei Furuya and translated by Tatsumi Hayashi, will be released by the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i. The book chronicles Furuya’s World...

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