Junzo Nojima’s Cherry Trees
50th Anniversary at Stamford's Arbor Day

STF/JSFC Logos & Nojima
(First draft, photos wanted)
On Friday, April 27, 2007 at 10:00 AM we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Nojima Cherry Trees and Arbor Day at Hart Magnet School in Stamford.  Besides an heavy rain there was a bomb scare in central Stamford that tied the morning commute in knots.  Stamford Mayor Dannel P. Malloy presented Stamford's Proclamation of Arbor Day and the 50th Anniversary of the Nojima Cherry Trees but could not stay due to pressing business.  Mr. Jiro Okuyama,  Director of the Japan Information Center, addressed  us. The City of Stamford  was  again proclaimed a "Tree City USA" by  Chris Donnaly.  Two relatives of Mr. Nojima and their spouses came from Kikaiga Shima in Japan to attend the festivities.  Mr. Hisayoshi Nojima knew Junzo and addressed the gathering in Japanese with translation provided by our vice president Harry Sakamaki.  A DVD of the Junzo Nojima Kamishibai created by Noboru Uezumi was presented. The cultural program begun on faith that everyone would arrive and they did but not in the order expected. Yumi McDonald presented the classical Japanese Dance Wisteria Maiden.  Ms. Kyoko Ohnishi presented the classical Japanese dance Blessing Dew and lead the third graders of Hart Magnet School in the Japanese dance Sakura Sakura.  Sandra Shen and O-Tatsu Taiko presented a rousing Taiko drum performance.Shamisen Players Our last performance was by the shamisen group Kichoukai (Happy Butterfly).  Ms. Yoko Arimura, Ms. Kumiko Martin, and Ms. Tomoko Takagi's shamisen performance included the very appropriate Karakasa (Umbrella), Shio Kumi (Sea Water Drawing), Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Haru no Ogawa (A Brook in Springtime), and Shiretoko Ryojyou (A Journey to Shiretoko). The performers, Mr. Okuyama, and the Nojima  relatives retired to lunch at Kujaku Restaurant which also supplied a Japanese buffet at Hart School.  Seven JSFC members and friends provided additional Japanese cultural education for the third graders of Hart Magnet School:  Ms. Chika McDonald, Ms. Sachiyo Furukawa, Ms. Hiroko Sakamaki, and Ms. Noriko Hiraga led the children in Kimono Dressing and Ms. Naomi Shima, Ms. Kyoko Aishman, and Ms. Kotomi Osa lead the children in Origami. 

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