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Event celebrates Japanese culture, people

| March 24, 2023 1:00 AM

An event celebrating the Japanese culture at East Bonner County Library on March 16 was a tremendous success. Participants enjoyed a tea ceremony, calligraphy and origami.

The event was hosted by Emiko, originally from Japan, and one of the co-challenge team leaders of the international Expo in Osaka, Japan, in 2025.

Emiko is attempting to spread the joy and the importance of English to Japanese people. She also wants to introduce Japanese culture to the world.

The event was held in English. At the event, she had one of team member Hiroko, who teaches Japanese in Sandpoint, and two college students from Japan demonstrate their Japanese cultural skills. 

“I’m glad to tell of the appeal of calligraphy to audiences," said Momoka Mizuhara, who demonstrated calligraphy at the event. "I believe calligraphy is an amazing part of Japanese culture because we can express our mind through letters. I want to protect and expand this culture. So, I want to continue to tell of the appeal of calligraphy to the world using English. I hope people will come to  know calligraphy and love this part of Japanese culture.”

Reika, one of the college students helping at the event, presented the tea ceremony.

“I am now a sophomore at a college in Japan. I have been learning the tea ceremony since high school," she said. "I could learn about difficult phrases to tell about the tea ceremony in English. There is no end to learning about culture. I believe that we can learn about each country through culture. I want to interact more deeply with people from other countries, even after I’ve gone back to Japan. I appreciate everyone for allowing us to share such a meaningful time and all the opportunities given us.”

Emiko said she and her team members are hosting a language exchange online event next month for those interested in Japan or Japanese culture and people in Japan who want to learn English. The first half of the event is in English and the other half is in Japanese. The language skill level is set for the beginners. 

The event is set for Friday, April 21, at 5:30 p.m. via Zoom. For more information, contact Emiko by email at 25.expo.english.team@gmail.com; or via Instagram at 25.expo.english.team.