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Education Grant Grantees 2023 

Ikebana International Chapter, Winnetka, Illinois 
Ikebana Day 2023 – Ikebana International Chicago Chapter 
Program Director: Margot Wang 
To support Ikebana Day at the Chicago Botanic Garden. The Ikebana International Chicago Chapter organizes two workshops and live demonstration by Mr. Jose Alcedo.  

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign – Japan House, Champaign, Illinois 
University of Illinois Japan House Matsuri 
Program Director: Jennifer Gunji-Ballsrud 
To support the Japan House annual Matsuri at Urbana-Champaign Illinois. Matsuri celebrates and highlights the diversity of Japanese arts and cultures. Prior to Matsuri, Ms. Chiba, a Japanese shodo (calligraphy) artist, performed the outreach activity with K-12 school students. 

Truman Heartland Community Foundation, Independence, Missouri 
2023 Uptown Matsuri 
Project Director: Dustin Henrich 
To support the Independence Uptown Matsuri Japanese Festival, an annual event held in downtown Independence, Missouri, with the goal of celebrating Japanese culture and tradition in honor of the sister city relationship with Higashi Murayama, Japan. 

Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix, Phoenix, Arizona 
Let’s Go to Tanabata! 
Project Director: Masahiro Yamamoto 
To organize a two-day event hosted by the Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix to promote Japanese traditional and pop cultures in the form of a Japanese summer festival called Tanabata. The festival attracted over 2000 attendees. 

Arching Oaks Arts and Culture Center, Eustis, Florida 
Japanese Arts Exploration for Youth: An 8-month Journey Through Tradition 
Project Director: Sabastian Velilla 
To provide Japanese art workshops to art club students and teachers at Seminole Springs Elementary School which is a Title One school located in Eustis, Florida. The program takes place during the 2023-24 academic year and Arching Oaks instructors meet with students on two consecutive Wednesdays of every month to present and create a different traditional Japanese art form. 

Brooklyn Japanese American Family Association, Brooklyn, New York  
2023 Japan Village Summer Festival  
Program Director: Jun Nishimura 
To support the 3rd annual Summer Family Festival at Japan Village in Brooklyn New York. The main focus for this year’s matsuri is the “Visit Japan Promotion: Tour to Morioka Japan” in correspondence to the New York Times’ announcement of Morioka as one of the 52 Places for Travelers to Visit in 2023. The summer festival collaborates with the city of Morioka to hold a Wanko Soba eating contest and Morioka Sansa dance contest.  

Kunhardt Film Foundation, Inc, Pleasantville, New York 
The Silent Witness Education and Outreach 
Program Director:  Fran Sterling 
To support the Educational Outreach of the film “The Silent Witness”. Kunhardt Film Foundation (KFF) created a short movie film about Ms. Tomiko Morimoto West’s experience as a 13-year-old in Hiroshima on the day the first atomic bomb was dropped and developed an engagement guide for the film that includes important historical framing and recommended discussion prompts in the classroom. 

Delta State College (Delta State University), Cleveland, Mississippi 
Japan Festival in the Mississippi Delta 
Project Director: Michelle Johansen 
To support a Japanese cultural festival at Delta State University organized by JOI Coordinator, Mizuki Umebara at Delta State University. Delta State University hosts a 5-day event to further promote Japan and Japanese culture by bringing a more authentic experience of Japanese culture to the people of the region. 

DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois 
An oblivious Japanese traversing the U.S. border: Jun Fujita’s Life through his photography and poetry 
Project Director: Nobuko Chikamatsu 
To invite Mr. Mitsuhiro Wakayama, a curator of Tokyo Station Gallery and a scholar in Photography History, to Chicago, IL to (1) lead a workshop to discuss Japanese American photographers whose work was set in Chicago, and (2) research Jun Fujita’s photography and its reflection in Chicago and Japan to prepare for upcoming exhibitions in Japan and the U.S. 

Japan-America Society of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming 
Japan Festival 
Project Director: Ayako Ohara 
To support a Japanese cultural festival at Laramie High School organized by JAS Wyoming. The event introduces Japanese culture and arts to the general population in Laramie at no cost. The arts and crafts for younger attendees include origami, calligraphy, and trying out yukata/happi for fun. The event also provides performances and workshops. 

Japan-America Society of Greater Austin, Inc., Austin, Texas 
Talking Antiques with Lark Mason Jr. And Lark Mason III: Understanding Japanese Art and its Market 
Project Director: Lindsay Nakashima 
To conduct an educational antique appraisal event featuring Japanese antiques including a kimono display and workshop. The first part is the kimono display from the collection that JASGA owns. The display is followed by a workshop provided by an instructor who helps attendees try on kimono and learn about it. The following lecture focuses on the history of Japanese antiques. The pieces up for appraisal are pre-selected by the appraisers before the event. 

Arching Oaks Arts and Culture Center, Eustis, Florida 
Japanese Arts Intensive with Visiting Artist, Kihachiro Nishiura 
Project Director: Sabastian Velilla 
To support a 3-day Japanese art workshop series conducted by an artist named Kihachiro Nishiura. In those three days, the artist conducts a demonstration and a workshop for Kodo (incense ceremony), Shodo calligraphy, and Ikebana flower arrangement in each evening from January 15 through 17. 

Austin Japan Community, Austin, Texas 
Aizome Project: workshops and gallery exhibition  
Project Director: Yoko Stetson 
To support the Aizome Project set to be held from March 1 through 13 in Austin, TX, to introduce Japanese Aizome tradition in Austin’s community and to create a venue for blending the tradition and the Austin’s contemporary culture through immersive workshops and gallery exhibitions. 

Dillon Friends of the Library, Dillon, Montana 
Japanese Festival in Western MT 
Project Director: Nao Fukumoto 
To support the Dillon Public Library partnered with the local community to host a two-day Japan Festival in March 2024. The event is designed not only to introduce Japanese culture, but also to allow participants to experience, watch, listen to, and feel Japanese culture in Dillon. 

The University of Tennessee Foundation, Martin, Tennessee 
Japan Festival 
Project Director: Kyoko Hammond 
To support the University of Tennessee Martin to host a 2-day long Japan-themed festival. Due to the geographical challenges, opportunities to enjoy various cultural events are limited. This event is intended to enhance the cultural and educational experience of UTM students and people from Martin and surrounding communities. 

Texas State Museum of Asian Cultures and Education Center, Corpus Cristi, Texas 
The South Texas Japanese Culture Forum 
Project Director: Richard Hafemeister 
To support a two-day event to promote the Japanese culture and language in Corpus Christi, where the Japanese culture is not so familiar to the local community. The events consist of workshops, activities, and demonstrations, such as Bonsai, Japanese language class, Ikebana, tea ceremony, Taiko performance, Origami, Calligraphy, martial arts demonstration, kimono/samurai armor try-on and other cultural tables. There are also presentations of Kamishibai, Kirie, Origami, Kirigami, and other Japanese paper artworks.