Japanese American National Museum
Events Calendar

Calendar of Events — February 2009

All programs are free for JANM members and included with admission for non-members, unless otherwise noted. Events are subject to change.

Reservations are recommended for most programs; you may use the links below. You may also RSVP by emailing or calling 213.625.0414 at least 48 hours in advance. Please indicate the name, date, and time of the program, as well as your name and the number of people in your party.

For all ticketed events (classes, workshops, food tours, etc.), pre-payment is required to hold your space. Cancellations must be made 48 hours in advance or no refund will be issued.

Thursday, February 5, 2009
5:00 PM—8:00 PM

Kogi Taco Truck

events/thumb.php100.jpg Check out the Kogi Korean Taco Truck will be in front of the National Museum this Thursday. If you've never had Korean style tacos, this is an opportunity you shouldn't miss! We will also have the mellow soundz of Akaider.

For more information, go to:

Saturday, February 7, 2009
1:00 PM—2:00 PM

Exhibition Tour

events/commonground100_____.png Tour our ongoing exhibition Common Ground: Heart of a Community with our experienced and knowledgeable docents.

In conjunction with the exhibition Common Ground: The Heart of Community
Saturday, February 7, 2009
2:00 PM—4:00 PM

Mei Ling in China City by Icy Smith


Through her new children’s book, Mei Ling in China City—a true story of friendship between a Chinese American girl in China City and a Japanese American girl in a concentration camp—author Icy Smith (Sui Bing Tang) will present the history of the Los Angeles’s early Chinatowns, and the Chinese and Japanese American experiences during World War II.

For sale through the Museum Store.

Thursday, February 12, 2009
5:00 PM—8:00 PM

Kogi Taco Truck

events/thumb.php100_.jpg Check out the Kogi Korean Taco Truck will be in front of the National Museum this Thursday. If you've never had Korean style tacos, this is an opportunity you shouldn't miss!

For more information, go to:

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Exhibition Opening

Gokurosama: Contemporary Photos of the Nisei in Hawaii opens.

Saturday, February 14, 2009
11:00 AM—4:00 PM

Target Free Family Saturday: Be Animated!

events/2007-07-14_TargetLogo______.JPG FREE ALL DAY!

Enjoy a day of family fun with anime and comic book activities and workshops. Keeping checking back for program schedule!

Generously sponsored by Target, these special Saturdays are filled with fun activities giving families unique ways to learn, play, and grow together.

All day craft activities:
  • Put your drawings in motion by creating your own flipbook.

  • It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s YOU! Become a superhero by designing your own mask and cape.

  • Ruthie’s Origami Corner: Make an origami jumping frog!

  • All day special events and exhibition:
  • A continuous screening of Spike TV’s anime sensation Afro Samurai

  • View prints from Afro Samurai in our one time only special viewing

  • 11:00 PM – Doors open

    12:00 PM – East West Players Presents: Drop in Family Improv Workshop

    1:00 & 3 PM – Animation & Digital Story Telling Workshop with Mar Elepaño
    The Quickstory – using blank index cards and a pencil, the participants will create a short narrative using picture panels. They will then narrate it in real time recording just the panels with their voice as narration. The performance will be played back as a digital movie.

    1:30 PM – A conversation with Afro Samurai

    2:00 PM – Reading of The Year of the Ox with author Oliver Chin
    2009 is the Year of the Ox! Olivia is a young ox eager to help but growing up is challenging. When her friend Mei gets in trouble, can Olivia rescue her adopted sister and discover her true character? Olivia's amazingly illustrated quest will delight children and adults alike. Fourth in the annual series Tales from the Chinese Zodiac, The Year of the Ox features all the colorful animals of the lunar calendar and shows how fun it is to "have a cow!" [Purchase a copy of The Year of the Ox at the Museum Store Online]

    2:30 PM – The history of Anime/Manga with Oliver Chin
    Are you a fan of anime & manga? Well the world started before Bakugan, Bleach, and Naruto! Learn how Japanese animation & comics came to the USA as comics pro Oliver Chin tells how he helped make Pokemon a #1 hit (and other interesting stories) and the history of other best-selling series you might not know about. Once we're done, you'll have more titles you'll need to add to your reading and viewing lists!

    4:00 PM – Doors close


    Mar Elepaño
    Mar Elepaño was born in the Philippines in 1954. He left for Los Angeles to study film in 1975 at the University of Southern California. He finished his degree in Film Production and stayed on to become a staff member and later adjunct faculty. He has been teaching at the USC School of Cinematic Arts in the John C. Hench Division of Animation & Digital Arts since 1993 and also serves as the production supervisor for the division. He has been involved with community arts programs in Los Angeles that help young people create personal time based narratives since 1986 with organizations like Visual Communications Inc., the Heart Project, the Los Angeles Educational Partnership, the Korean Resource Center, Khmer Girls in Action.

    Afro Samurai
    Afro Samurai is the story of a Black samurai in a futuristic yet feudal Japan who is on a mission to avenge the wrongful death of his father. Afro is a warrior who travels a solitary path encountering a myriad of enemies, friends, and challenges beyond imagination. (From

    East West Players
    East West Players is an Asian American theatre organization in Los Angeles, founded in 1965. As one of the nation’s first Asian American theatre organizations, East West Players today continues to produce works and educational programs that give voice to the Asian Pacific American experience.

    For more information go to:

    Oliver Chin
    Oliver Chin is the publisher of Immedium ( which creates wonderfully illustrated children’s books. A graduate of Harvard, he has written many books including The Tao of Yao: Insights from Basketball's Brightest Big Man, the graphic novel 9 of 1: A Window to the World, Julie Black Belt and the The Year of the Ox from the popular The Tales of the Chinese Zodiac series.

    Oliver Chin helped popularize anime and manga in America by selling 1 million copies of Pokemon comics #1, which holds the US comics industry record for most printings (16). Called a “comics expert" and "an expert in Pacific Rim pop culture” by the San Jose Mercury News, he teaches people how to make their own comics at schools and libraries nationwide.

    2009 Target Free Family Saturday schedule

    March 14 – Say Cheese!

    April 11 – What's Cooking?

    Other Family Events at the National Museum

    March 28: SPRING ROLLS into JANM (a family cooking workshop)

    Saturday, February 14, 2009
    1:00 PM—2:00 PM

    Private Member’s Exhibition Tour

    A special private member's only tour of the new exhibition Gokurosama: Contemporary Photos of the Nisei in Hawaii.

    By invitation only.

    Saturday, February 14, 2009
    2:00 PM—3:00 PM

    A Conversation with Brian Y. Sato

    Come hear photographer Brian Y. Sato talk about his newest exhibition Gokurosama: Contemporary Photos of the Nisei in Hawaii.

    Reception to follow.

    FREE all day!

    Sunday, February 15, 2009
    1:00 PM—3:00 PM

    Craft Class with Ruthie Kitagawa: Girl’s Day Cards

    Create fun Girl’s Day and recycled security envelope flowered cards for your friends and family. $8 for National Museum members; $13 for non-members, includes Museum admission and supplies.

    Sunday, February 15, 2009
    2:00 PM—4:00 PM

    Transcending: The Wat Misaka Story

    events/44WatMisaka100.jpg This exciting documentary features the first Asian American pro basketball player, Wat Misaka. This film will be shown at the Aratani/Japan America Theater.

    To make reservations or for more information contact: Aratani/Japan America Theatre Box Office 213 680-3700. Tickets are $10 General Admission, $8 Seniors/Students, $7 JACCC & JANM Members.

    Presented in collaboration with the Japanese American Community Culture Center, Little Tokyo Service Center, and the National Museum.
    Thursday, February 19, 2009
    7:00 PM—10:00 PM

    Bringing the Circle Together: Whispers

    events/100colorturtlesmall__________.jpg Free Screening of Whispers

    Chumash filmmaker George Angelo, Jr. interviews and documents three Indigenous cultures of Southern California: the Chumash, Tongva/Gabrielino, and Juaneno. This extraordinary documentary presents their history and living traditions, with a special focus on rock art, the tomol, and dolphin dancers. Guests for the night include filmmaker George Angelo, Jr.

    Bringing the Circle Together: A Native American Film Series

    Bringing the Circle Together: A Native American Film Series is a FREE monthly film series located in downtown Los Angeles at the National Center for Preservation of Democracy. The film series was established to provide quality documentaries by and about Indigenous people of the Americas, and bring together a central gathering place where discussion and awareness of issues can be shared with the Native community and its supporters.

    The film series is held at the National Center for Preservation of Democracy located at 111 North Central Avenue, between 1st Street and Central Avenue, in downtown Los Angeles. The NCPD can be reached via train, bus, or parking in the area (pdf for directions). Doors open at 6:30pm.

    The film series is hosted by Lorin Morgan-Richards and Tahesha Knapp-Christensen and is sponsored by the following organizations:

    The Japanese American National Museum
    The National Center for Preservation of Democracy
    Hecho de Mano
    Nahui Ohlin
    InterTribal Entertainment

    For more information about the film series please visit
    or by email at

    Friday, February 20, 2009
    5:00 PM—8:00 PM

    Kogi Taco Truck


    Check out the Kogi Korean Taco Truck will be in front of the National Museum this Thursday. If you've never had Korean style tacos, this is an opportunity you shouldn't miss!

    For more information, go to:

    Saturday, February 21, 2009
    2:00 PM—4:00 PM

    The Community Day of Remembrance

    events/koji_dor100.jpg FREE ALL DAY!

    The Day of Remembrance is held each year to commemorate President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's signing of Executive Order 9066 on February 19, 1942. EO 9066 authorized the unconstitutional forced removal of 120,000 Japanese Americans from the west coast and Hawai'i during World War II.

    Mass incarceration of Japanese Americans was accepted by the majority of US Citizens because of the racial prejudice that existed toward a community of immigrants. Alien Land Laws prevented Japanese Issei's the right to own land, anti-miscegenation laws prevented them from marrying outside their race, and the "American" community was generally unwilling to incorporate these immigrants into mainstream society. Now 67 years later, this same prejudice and stigma around immigration still exists. The 2009 Day of Remembrance program will commemorate Japanese American immigration while creating connections to the current day debate. The program seeks to forge alliances and stand in solidarity with a new generation of communities working towards positive change in immigration reform and integration in a new America.

  • Keynote Address: Professor Roger Daniels, Charles Taft Phelps Professor Emeritus, University of Cincinnati. Prisoners Without Trial: Japanese Americans in WWII

  • NCRR Fighting Spirit Award: Lillian Nakano

  • Voices of Immigration: Issei Stories & UCLA IDEAS-Zeenat Bhamani, Wendy Ito, Matias Ramos

  • Rapper: Prophet

  • Congressman Xavier Becerra (CA-31) Invited

  • Justice for Japanese Latin Americans

    Presented in collaboration with the Nikkei for Civil Rights & Redress, the Japanese American Citizen’s League–Pacific Southwest, UCLA Asian American Studies Center, Lane Hirabayashi (The George & Sakaye Aratani Chair in Japanese American Internment, Redress and Community), and the National Museum.
  • Thursday, February 26, 2009
    5:00 PM—8:00 PM

    Kogi Taco Truck

    events/thumb.php100___.jpg Check out the Kogi Korean Taco Truck will be in front of the National Museum this Thursday. If you've never had Korean style tacos, this is an opportunity you shouldn't miss!

    For more information, go to:

    Saturday, February 28, 2009
    10:15 AM—12:15 PM

    Little Tokyo Walking Tour

    events/2007-07-28_walkingtour____________.jpg Relive history and learn about present-day Little Tokyo with National Museum docents. $8 Members; $13 non-members, includes Museum admission. Comfortable walking shoes and clothes recommended. Weather permitting.

    Saturday, February 28, 2009
    8:00 PM—10:00 PM

    Letters to A Student Revolutionary

    events/Letters_Promo_100.jpg Saturday, Feb 28 @ 8:00 PM
    Sunday, March 1 @ 3:00PM & 7:30 PM

    In commemoration of the 20th Anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre.

    Written by Elizabeth Wong, and directed by Peter J. Kuo, Letters is about a decade-long correspondence between two pen pals and their search for true democracy. Panel discussion of civil and human rights advocates and scholars will follow the Sunday matinee performance at 5 PM. $15 members/Student/Seniors/Groups (10+); $20 for non-members.

    For more information and/or to make ticket reservations, go to: or call 310-594-3068.

    SPECIAL EXHIBITION: TIANANMEN STORY: A Photo Essay Exhibition by Visual Artists Guild, with additional special photographs by Catherine Bauknight



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