Japanese American National Museum
Events Calendar

Calendar of Events — July 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. (RSVPs are not accepted for Family Festivals).

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, July 2, 2009

Summer Film Festival: Bento to Mixed Plate: Politics of Plate Lunch

events/bento100.gif To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Frank H. Watase Media Arts Center, the National Museum will continuously screen Bento to Mixed Plate: Politics of Plate Lunch.

Politics of Plate Lunch is a penetrating yet tender look beneath the “island paradise” stereotype to explore the inter-ethnic and generational complexities of contemporary Hawai‘i.

20 min.

This special showing will be screened at the Terasaki Orientation Theater.
Saturday, July 11, 2009

Exhibition Opening

Kokeshi: From Folk Art to Art Toy opens.

In conjunction with the exhibition Kokeshi: From Folk Art to Art Toy
Saturday, July 11, 2009
11:00 AM—4:00 PM

Target Free Family Saturday: Books Galore!



Come and explore with us the wonderful world of Asian American and Japanese American books.

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:
  • Do you have a story to share? Create your own kamishibai! Kamishibai is a form of storytelling that originated in Japanese Buddhist temples in the 12th century.

  • Use your big imagination to create a notebook.

  • Hold that spot! Uncover cool colors as you scratch a design into a bookmark.

  • Ruthie’s Origami Corner: make an origami book and pencil.

  • 11 AM – Doors open.

    12 PM – A special reading of Allen Say’s classic "Under the Cherry Blossom Tree" by our very own master storyteller Rodney Kageyama

    1 PM: Take a tour of our ongoing exhibition, Common Ground: The Heart of Community , with our very knowledge core of docents.

    1 & 3 PM– Digital Story Telling Workshop (PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS WORKSHOP HAS BEEN CANCELED)

    1 - 4 PM– To celebrate summer, good books and fun foods Kidding Around the Kitchen and JANM are inviting kids of all ages to come and make a homemade maple granola fruit parfait.

    2 PM– Author Nathaniel Lachenmeyer will read and sign his book, "The Origami Master." A special activity will follow!

    4 PM – Doors close


    Under the Cherry Blossom Tree
    Written and illustrated by Allen Say
    Allen Say retells a classic makura -- a short story told in Japanese joke houses to warm up the audience -- with the sharpness, vigor and timing of a stand-up comic."

    Under the Cherry Blossom Tree is available at the Museum store.

    Nathaniel Lachenmeyer
    Nathaniel Lachenmeyer is an award-winning author of books for children and adults. His books have been translated into six languages.

    The Origami Master
    Written by Nathaniel Lachenmeyer. Illustrated by Aki Sogabe.
    Shima the Origami Master lives on a mountain in Japan. He isn’t lonely, because his beautiful origami animals keep him company. One morning Shima finds a marvelous new paper elephant on his desk. Where could it have come from? The next morning, a splendid dragon is in its place. It looks real enough to fly away. That night, Shima stays awake to find out who could make such wonderful creatures. But when he discovers who the mysterious artist is, he learns a surprising lesson about friendship. The Origami Master is a Junior Library Guild Selection, a Children's IndieNext Pick, and a Booklinks Lasting Connection.

    Ages 7-9 Hardbound: 32 pp.

    The Origami Master is available at the Museum store: Museum store

    Kidding Around The Kitchen

    It is such a common problem in today's world that families rarely get to eat together anymore.

    Kidding around the Kitchen shows that families can make and eat food together without a lot of fuss or a huge time commitment. The family food demo helps families with tips on smarter shopping, fun recipe ideas, advice on how to incorporate healthier choices when possible and advice on how to delegate tasks in an age-appropriate way. This family food demo is a “how to” get everyone involved in the family meal.

    Kidding around the Kitchen is for families that have full plates in life as well as wanting a full plate of food to enjoy together. It's about time well spent. You'll see your kids get a we did it attitude!! This family food demo works on the try it premises all while empowering the kids and family. If we can do it, so can you!!

    Kidding around the Kitchen is an adventure in fun, food and family. We are not only making food, we are making memories.

    For more information on Kidding around the kitchen go to:

    Other Family Events at the National Museum

    August 15: Summer Festival on the Courtyard

    August 29: Common Ground Tour for Families

    August 29: Taiko for Families

    Saturday, July 11, 2009
    1:00 PM—2:00 PM

    Exhibition Tour

    events/commonground100__________.png Tour our ongoing exhibition Common Ground: Heart of a Community with experienced docents.

    In conjunction with the exhibition Common Ground: The Heart of Community
    Thursday, July 16, 2009

    Summer Film Festival: Top of Their Game

    events/Top100.gif To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Frank H. Watase Media Arts Center, the National Museum will continuously screen Top of Their Game.

    Top of Their Game profiles Japanese American athletes from three generations and nine different sports. Interviews, historical images and action footage reveal the behind-the-scenes stories of those who have risen to the “top of their game.”

    Featured are Kristi Yamaguchi, Tommy Kono and Emerick Ishibawa, Wayne Miyata and Don Kadowaki, Judy Kikuta and Dusty Mizunoue, Wally Yonamine, Bob Kinjii Shibuya, Wat Misaka, Ann Kiyomura Hayashi, and Johnnie, Eric and Chad Morton.

    62 min.

    [Purchase a copy of Top of Their Game at the Museum Store Online]

    This special showing will be screened at the Terasaki Orientation Theater.
    Thursday, July 16, 2009
    7:00 PM—10:00 PM

    Bringing the Circle Together: When your Hands are Tied

    events/100colorturtlesmall________________.jpg Free Screening of When your Hands are Tied

    Since native youth do not often see reflections of themselves or their communities in mainstream media, When your Hands are Tied explores and documents native young people and role models who are finding exciting and positive ways to direct their lives through self-motivation in combination with traditional teachings to help prepare for the challenges of everyday life. Special guests tba.

    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

    Saturday, July 18, 2009

    Asian American Poetry Writing Presents: Creative Writing Classes

    events/aapw-logo100_.gif *PLEASE NOTE: That this class has been CANCELED

    Creative Writing Classes are for everyone from the curious person who has never written before to the closet writer who is looking to be published. $150 for six sessions. $125 for JANM members (Minimum 5 participants, maximum 12). Pre-registration is required.

    1. Introduction to Reading and Writing Contemporary Poetry
    2. Intermediate Fiction Writing with a focus on revision
    3. Intro to Fiction and Non-Fiction

    To sign up for a class or for more information, please go to Pre-registration is required.<
    Saturday, July 18, 2009
    2:00 PM—4:00 PM

    Nurse of Manzanar: Book Conversation and Self-Publishing Workshop

    events/Nurse_of_Manzanar100.jpg Come hear author Samuel Nakamura discuss his book, Nurse of Manzanar, which retells his mother’s life as a Japanese American nurse following the attack on Pearl Harbor. In addition, he will lead an informative workshop to help you publish your own book or novel!

    Saturday, July 25, 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. $9 Members; $14 non-members, includes Museum admission. Comfortable walking shoes and clothes recommended. Weather permitting.

    Saturday, July 25, 2009
    1:00 PM—3:00 PM

    Craft Class with Ruthie Kitagawa: Floral Greeting Cards Using Recycled Security Envelopes

    events/Ruthies_Card_100-1.jpg Create fun floral greeting cards using security envelopes. $9 for National Museum members; $14 for non-members, includes Museum admission and supplies.

    Saturday, July 25, 2009
    2:00 PM—4:00 PM

    Kokeshi: Not Just a Toy!

    Collector Itske Stern, author of articles about kokeshi for Daruma magazine and other Japanese publications, and her husband Anthony, will talk about the history of traditional kokeshi and their personal journey in collecting over 1200 of these beautiful folk toys.

    In conjunction with the exhibition Kokeshi: From Folk Art to Art Toy



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